India news November 22, 2010

'We want to show cricketers can make a difference' - Kumble

ESPNcricinfo staff

Anil Kumble, the newly-elected KSCA president, has said his team's tenure at the helm of the administration and governance of Karnataka cricket is an opportunity to prove that cricketers can make a difference at all levels of the game in the state. "I believe we - all of us in the team - have the commitment, the intention, to change Karnataka cricket, to take it to the next level, to develop the facilities, the grassroots cricket," Kumble told news channel CNN-IBN. "We have the opportunities, we want to showcase that cricketers can make a difference. We have a belief, like we had on the cricket field."

Two other famous former Karnataka cricketers, Javagal Srinath and Venkatesh Prasad, were elected to the posts of secretary and vice-president respectively in what could prove as a landmark moment in the governance of cricket at the state level in India.

Kumble beat the incumbent president of the KSCA, Srikanta Datta Narasimharaja Wadiyar, the former Maharaja of Mysore, and his team won 22 out of the 24 seats up for grabs.

"It wasn't a fight, we have great respect for the maharaja, he's done a great job for the KSCA," he said. "It's just that there was a lot of factionalism and our job was to keep that out of the KSCA. We wanted to work as a team and that is what we'll do."

The KSCA elections were under extensive scrutiny since the time Kumble, Srinath and Prasad announced their candidatures. When asked if the results of the KSCA election could spark off a trend of cricketers stepping into administration across India, Kumble said: "We wanted to make a difference. We wanted to be part of the administration and make the changes. We will make a difference but please don't expect a miracle in 10 days, or when New Zealand play India at the Chinnaswamy Stadium in the ODI series. We have the expertise and the commitment; we will make people accountable for their performance."

Rahul Dravid, who made 191 in the third Test against New Zealand, had backed Kumble and his team in the elections and admitted there was much to be done after the win. "We have got a good mandate, we respect and recognise the mandate and we know that there is lot of work to be done."