Pace great Thomson to coach Mumbai youngsters

Mumbai, July 9 (IANS) Mumbai Cricket Association (MCA) on Thursday roped in Australia pace great Jeff Thomson as the coach for MCA-IDBI Federal Life Insurance Bowling Foundation where young bowling talent from around the city will be trained and coached by the Australian legend.

The foundation has been created to groom meritorious talent here and develop them into fast bowlers to boost the cricketing landscape of India. MCA will select a maximum of 30 pacers and spinners each in the 19 and above age group to be part of the foundation. Training will commence on Monday and will continue till May 31, 2017 as Thomson has been roped in for a two-year contract.

The 64-year-old played 51 Tests and 50 One-Day Internationals to claim total of 255 wickets. He was specially known for his unusual slinging bowling action and an aggressive approach which instilled fear in the hearts of several batsmen in 1970s.

“We have been thinking for this for long. Happy that it matured. I am glad that Thomson is coming to Mumbai to train the boys. We had a bowling scheme in the past and now we have roped in the Aussie great,” MCA vice-president Dilip Vengsarkar said.

“To win first class and international matches, bowlers need to be trained properly and this initiative will help Mumbai young guns. We earlier had Dennis Lillee, Glenn McGrath coming to India and training young bowlers at the MRF bowling foundation. Now we have Thomson guiding the young Mumbai bowlers become future stars.”

The training for these bowlers will be held throughout the year at the Sharad Pawar Indoor Stadium, formerly known as MCA Club in Bandra-Kurla Complex.

Vengsarkar said the foundation will be implemented in consultation with the head coach of MCA Academy Chandrakant Pandit.

“I am sure the young bowlers will learn a lot from Jeff. I don’t think we don’t have bowlers in Mumbai, but we have to find out the right talent and groom them for the future. Mumbai cricket has come out stronger not only in first class cricket but also in other forms. I hope this scheme can help Mumbai and India as well,” Vengsarkar said.

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