Well it has been a fairly quiet start but I must admit that it gave me a chance to get a lot of the final preparation work done. This morning I had a phone call from the coach of the ICL team the Dhaka Warriors, Balwinder Singh Sandhu (from India). It was good to finally meet him and get things started. As it turned out, I didn’t have to wait long – the first session was in the gym and I had 10 minutes to get ready!
I met the captain of the team – Habib ul Bashar, and he threw me a Dhaka shirt to wear. It seems I am destined to continue in the red and black as this is the colour of the Dhaka Warriors. Off we go to the gym with tw0 groups of about 1 hour each. The first group was made up of batsmaen and the second of bowlers.
I told them up front about my cricketing pedigree and suggested if they needed advice on cricket they probably should look somewhere else! If they didn’t get it this morning, I am sure they will at the nets session this afternoon! I did surprise myself however when I did some technique correction in the gym with a bowler. I told him that if he couldn’t hold a certain position in the gym, how was he going to be able to hold that position when bowling? I asked him what would happen if he did do that when bowling and he told me that he would bowl wide. I suggested that this would be even worse if he was in a fatigued state. He just looked at me and said “I thought you didn’t know anything about cricket!” As I have always said, the mechanics of sport are universal.
It’s funny though. I got by at Essendon for 10 years without having to kick a ball. I hope I can apply the same level of evasive skills with cricket and never have to bowl, throw or bat. Should be simple!
The team is made up of 14 players from Bangladesh. They all seem very eager and are friendly, receptive and based on one session in the gym, very coachable. They are hungry for any information that they can get.
Perhaps my biggest issue at the moment is learning their names. I cannot continue calling them all “mate”. Basher is easy as one of the players at Essendon was Basher. Another is Reza (pronounced razor) so I can get around that one too. I got all of the boys to pose for a photograph at the end of the gym session so that I can learn their names later tonight.
Anyway, pleased that it has started. Hopefully the physio and massage therapist turn up soon to give me a bit of a hand. We have got training up until the 9th and then we travel to Hydrabad for our first game.
Already on this trip to India, I have adapted the mindset of dont think, just do.