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NCA COO dodges questions on Prithvi Shaw's stint at academy post ban

by Saurabh Sharma Aug 01, 2019 • 14:26 PM

New Delhi, Aug 1: As has been the case with the National Cricket Academy (NCA) COO Tufan Ghosh ever since his appointment, Ghosh has once again been caught napping as India cricketer Prithvi Shaw continued to train at the NCA even after being suspended for doping on July 16. India opener Shikhar Dhawan posted a photo on July 17 which showed Shaw at the academy along with Dhawan and Umesh Yadav.

Speaking to IANS, Ghosh refused to comment on the matter and feigned ignorance. "I don't have any comments. I am not the correct person please check with the BCCI resources."

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When asked if he had been informed about the suspension by CEO Rahul Johri, Ghosh cut the phone.

A BCCI functionary confirmed that the anti-doping manager of the board, the legal team and the CEO were aware of the whole process and there was no way that Shaw should have trained at the NCA after he was suspended.

"Honestly, these are the only people who were aware of it and ideally Shaw should have immediately been removed from the NCA or any other facility of the board," the functionary explained.

Speaking to IANS, a BCCI official said that the turn of events at the NCA in recent times have been proof of the unprofessional functioning at the academy and Shaw training at the centre even after being suspended was further evidence of the same.

"I think it is very clear that NCA is an island and its COO is an island within that island. It seems to be in a different dimension altogether than the rest of Indian cricket. The NCA has good resources for rehabilitation thankfully but a player coming to the NCA for rehab is like a tourist on that island for the administrative staff and their presence there justifies the existence of the island itself. 

"If you see any aspect over the last couple of years, you have inefficiency, conflict, incompetence writ large over the administrative activities of the NCA. Rahul Dravid remains the only hope for the moment but he too is required to report to the COO and that can be disastrous," the official rued.

"Let us for a moment leave aside the questions of when Shaw's results came in. What I am unable to understand is that when he was provisionally suspended on July 16, how did he continue to train at the NCA? Is there no communication between the CEO Rahul Johri and NCA COO Ghosh?" 

A domestic player lamented how there seems to be separate rules for international players and the domestic ones. "We are made to undergo training and our associations keep pestering us to check every medicine before taking it and put that fear into us. While in Shaw's case, he is the second Indian player to get away with this. Are these rules and pressures only for us Ranji players while they have a get-out-of-jail card free forever?" he enquired.