Former India batsman VVS Laxman wants his former colleague and newly-elected BCCI president Sourav Ganguly to revive the National Cricket Academy, which he said was key to nurture future stars.
Laxman, who is also a consultant for CAB's special project 'vision 2020', was one of the special invitees along with Mohammed Azharuddin at Cricket Association of Bengal's felicitation ceremony for Ganguly.
For the past few years NCA, which was supposed to be the feeder line of Indian cricket, has actually become a rehabilitation centre, which even Ganguly acknowledged after taking over.
"If you ask me one thing, it would be how Sourav can revive the NCA. The greatness of this Indian team is their bench strength," Laxman said.
Making his point clear, Laxman cited example of South Africa's recent Test series humiliation at the hands of India.
"You look at this South Africa side and it is the most depleted I have seen. This is because their domestic structure is not strong. The reason why the Indian team is doing well is because the domestic structure is so good. Through the NCA, you can produce future champions for a long period of time."
Laxman said Ganguly has always performed better under pressures and hopes he will deliver as an administrator.
Referring to the tumultuous phase in 1999-2000 when India lost to Australia And South Africa at home, Laxman said Ganguly infused that positive energy to the Indian camp after that.
"He took over when it was a tough period for Indian cricket team. He revived the fortunes of Indian cricket team and inspired the youngsters, built the team that went on to become the number one Test cricket team. They qualified for the final of World Cup 2003. He has been very inspiring."
"He excelled in the tour and got selected for England series. He has not looked back since his Lord's innings. For me Sourav the cricketer is special and Sourav the captain is even more special."
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