ICC Cricket World Cup 2011 / News

World Cup 2011

New Zealand without physio, trainer

Nagraj Gollapudi in Nagpur

February 23, 2011

Comments: 32 | Text size: A | A

Scott Styris warms up with team-mates on the eve of New Zealand's World Cup opening match, Chennai, February 19, 2011
Scott Styris tweeted that the BCCI did not lend the NCA physio to New Zealand but his coach and manager clarified it was because of prior commitments © Associated Press

An embattled New Zealand will go into the needle clash against world champions Australia on Friday sans two crucial members of their support staff. Dayle Shackel (physiotherapist) and Bryan Stronach (trainer) rushed back home to attend their affected families in Christchurch, which was ripped apart by a devastating earthquake in the early hours of Tuesday.

A frazzled looking New Zealand squad arrived in Nagpur late Wednesday afternoon after having spent hours in front of the television to get fresh updates, with many players tweeting their sentiments frequently. But one such tweet by a senior player, Scott Styris, earlier today, created an unnecessary flutter when he remarked that the BCCI had refused to entertain New Zealand's request to borrow Paul Close, the physio at the National Cricket Academy (NCA) in Bangalore. Both John Wright and Dave Currie, New Zealand's coach and manager respectively, denied any such development, saying the BCCI did respond to their request to use Close, but could not release him as he had prior obligations.

"Does anyone know of a physio here in India? Unfortunately the bcci won't let us borrow their kiwi born academy physio whilst ours heads Back to chch to take care of his demolished house? Would only be for a week or so till he comes back," read one of the Styris' posts in the morning. His next tweet indicated that the Australians were happy to lend a helping hand instead. "still hopeful we'll get him, but the aussies will help us out tomo and management have a plan B if nece.so we're all good help is on the way," Styris posted.

Currie said that both Wright and he had been busy all day trying to work out a Plan B to make sure the team had the right support staff in place before both Shackel and Stronach returned in the first days of March. "We think we are fine. If there is a need they [Australia] would provide the support," Currie said. Currie also explained the reasons were serious and compelling for the pair to dash back. "Our physio Dayle had to get back as his property was probably damaged and his family was upset so he went to back to provide some support. Similarly, Bryan's wife is four months pregnant and his house has half come down, so he has gone back to take care of his wife." He made it clear that both are expected back with Shackel likely to return on March 2, two days before New Zealand's third match of the tournament, against Zimbabwe in Ahmedabad.

Immediately after their departure was announced, Wright called BCCI top brass and checked if New Zealand could borrow the services of Paul Close, who comes from Auckland. According to Wright the BCCI did check up on his request but explained that it would be virtually impossible to release Close from his duties at the NCA especially because the Indian squad is parked in Bangalore over the next two weeks where they are lined up to play England on February 27 and Ireland on March 6.

"Paul Close was not available because he is still doing some work for the BCCI at the academy," Currie said. "It would've been nice; he is a New Zealander, he would've been fantastic. But he has some responsibilities. We chatted with them [BCCI] about whether that would be possible and they came back saying they would've liked to help but he had obligations and can't be in two places at once. It is not a rejection. Not at all. We understand that."

Wright, instead of drawing up gameplans for Friday's match, had been making desperate calls to get cover for the missing support cast. It is understood that New Zealand have a Plan B with assurance from the Australians to pitch in if need be. In the interim, Wright has already had a word with John Gloster, who was the physio when he was the India coach. Gloster, who is now with the Rajasthan Royals, informed Wright that his plate was full but he would help out with a couple of suggestions of physios in India. Vaibhav Daga, who has toured with many India A teams, is one of the candidates.

Nagraj Gollapudi is an assistant editor at ESPNcricinfo

RSS Feeds: Nagraj Gollapudi


Comments: 32 
. Your ESPN name '' will be used to display your comments. Please click here to edit this.
Comments have now been closed for this article

Posted by Dummy4 on (February 24, 2011, 14:45 GMT)

Its a fashon these days to blame the BCCI for every ill in international cricket.common guys get a break.why should NCA oblige to give their physio.Shouldnt Newzealand have made some backup plans.I mean common BCCI is not responsible for this that newzealand team is without an physio or a trainer.Most of these journos these days are making a living in bashing up the BCCI.I cant rule out the day when there is some earthquake taking place in some part of the world and some crowny journalist with sophisticated words comes up with an article on how the IPL caused environmental damage to the eco system and Big bad bcci is responsible

Posted by Andrew on (February 24, 2011, 8:56 GMT)

Is this for real? There are loads of physios out there that would happily jump on the next bus or plane to work with an international sports team for a month? They'd probably do it for free as well.

Posted by michael on (February 24, 2011, 8:12 GMT)

i think the physio who was with greatbatch is still contracted to nzc untill after the world cup so maybe she could go.

Posted by Randika on (February 24, 2011, 7:55 GMT)

@andy127: mate, technical support from trainer and physio are essential to a top sports team in the midst of a contest. Its physical AND mental. How very nice of the Aussies to offer support when the Kiwi's are supposed to play against them durign the period!

Our thoughts and prayers as Sri Lankans are with the people of NZ and we wish them and the black caps emerge well out of it. Hope BCCI can source soem local support for them if the desired help is unavailable!

Posted by Dummy4 on (February 24, 2011, 7:22 GMT)

I thought Team India had recently changed over to Nitin Patel as their physio. Kiwisi could still use Paul Close. Also, the Kiwis can scourge for one in Nagpur, I am sure the city be having at least one odd physio who would be willing to lend a helping arm to the side.

Posted by Dummy4 on (February 24, 2011, 7:01 GMT)

Its good if BCCI provides help.... but they r not obliged to do so.. NZ is an international team and they should be able to suppotr themselves.. cant blame BCCI for this..

Posted by Andrew on (February 24, 2011, 6:23 GMT)

Got a lady I work with who is from Christchurch, its amazing that this quake (as opposed to the Sep 10 one), did more damage considering it was a lot smaller. Lots of coverage on Oz TV on this. Looks like the whole city needs to be re-built! Saw footage of a house where a boulder smashed a hole in the back wall & then punched through the front wall & then rolled another 2 or 3 hundred metres down the road. The boulder was ALMOST the size of a car! It was almost like something out of a cartoon, the roof was undamaged, just these 2 holes! @ Phil.S.B - don't feel bad, we love a bit of trans-tasman rivalry OVER SPORT, when it comes to tragedies, we cover each others back better than any other 2 countries on the planet. So whats a bit of banter over a game? I must admit I wouldn't mind too much if our 30 game unbeaten WC run comes to end against your mob. I'd swap that for winning the Rugby WC in NZ!!!! LOL!!!!!

Posted by Dummy4 on (February 24, 2011, 6:20 GMT)

Come on guys, its none of BCCIs business. They should keep quite unless they are asked for help.

Posted by Keith on (February 24, 2011, 5:14 GMT)

I'm getting old and cry a lot more these days, but the scenes from Christchurch have wrenched the heart. At times I think the Trans-Tasman rivalry when it comes to sport is a little too intense, but I'm a sensitive Aussie and I think there could be no greater story if they managed to win the World Cup.

Posted by D on (February 24, 2011, 4:47 GMT)

Am Indian and feel BCCI should do all it can to help NZ manage their campaign. It is sad what has happened in NZ and we all should sympathize. That said, do not criticize BCCI on Close so fast. We do not know what he was/is busy with. Professionals often have obligations that make it hard for them to get reassigned to other teams - you see this in companies as well.

Email Feedback Print
Nagraj GollapudiClose
News | Features Last 3 days
  • No stories yet
News | Features Last 3 days
  • No stories yet

World Cup Videos