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ICL finds a supporter in Mongia

ICL finds a supporter in Mongia

Nayan Mongia says ICL may be a blessing in disguise.

Mumbai: Despite the Indian cricket board’s (BCCI) recent threats to ban cricketers involved with Indian Cricket League, the ICL has found a staunch supporter in former Indian stumper Nayan Mongia, who felt it is a fantastic idea to get international stars to rub shoulders with young and aspiring local cricketers.

“Personally, I think it is a fantastic idea to bring in international stars like Brian Lara, Glenn McGrath and Shane Warne to play along with promising young Indian cricketers, who will, otherwise, will never be able to share the same dressing rooms with their childhood idols”, Mongia told Cricketnext.com on Saturday.

“If this concept succeeded in a big way, the ICL probably will also popularise the Twenty20 format, which is still to catch on in our country right now. Knowingly or unknowingly, I think, ICL will end up promoting Twenty20 which could turn out to be a blessing in disguise for the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI)”, he added.

When pointed out that the BCCI and ICL are at the loggerheads with the official body threatening to take action against any player (past or present) who is associated with ICL, Mongia said, he did not want to comment on it.

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“I don’t want to get too deep into this controversy but what I want to point out is that ICL’s efforts will only help nurture young talents in the country and also help fulfill young cricketers’ dream of playing with or against international stars”, Mongia pointed out.

When asked whether he has got an offer from ICL to join them, he replied in the negative, but did not rule out a positive reply if offered a job.

“No, so far nobody from ICL have approached me with any offer but if a offer comes up I would definitely consider it provided I can do justice to the post offered and help promote the game”, he said.

Complimenting the Indian cricket team’s fine show at Trent Bridge, Mongia said, it was good to see new bowling heroes emerge on the scene but cautioned that the team should not get carried away as only half the job was done keeping in mind the Indian team’s past records of losing Test and One-Day series after a good start.

“I think it was good to see Zaheer (Khan) emerge from the shadows of Anil Kumble and win the match for us with a nine-wicket haul. I think even our batsmen complimented our bowlers with good batting and I am sure their confidence will be sky high”, he said.

“However, how well they will be able to defend the lead is something very difficult to say as they (Indian team) have a history of surrendering the series after taking an early lead in the past. May be if our batsmen put on the runs on the board for their bowlers to do the job, they can still beat this English side, with a deflated bowling attack”, Mongia, who was considered as one of the best stumpers the country has ever produced, added.

first published:August 04, 2007, 15:28 IST