India news June 26, 2012

Lillee to end association with MRF Pace Foundation

ESPNcricinfo staff

Former Australia fast bowler Dennis Lillee has decided to end to his association with the MRF Pace Foundation in Chennai, citing his desire to "not travel anymore". He will oversee two more training camps, before ending his 25-year association with the fast-bowling academy.

"It wasn't an easy call. But then, one of the main reasons behind this decision is that I don't want to travel anymore," Lillee was quoted as saying in the Deccan Chronicle. "I have decided not to stay away from my family for lengthy periods."

During his time with the academy, Lillee had worked with several India players. "Zaheer [Khan], Javagal Srinath and Venkatesh Prasad would top the list," Lillee said, talking about the bowlers who trained with him. "Munaf Patel, to me, has been a disappointment. He had the natural gift of speed but someone has obviously misguided him to drop pace. S Sreesanth, too, is a big let down, for the talent he showcased ..."

Lillee said he would have liked to work with the BCCI in some capacity. "Yes, I was a bit disappointed," he said. "I like to do things my way and sometimes that frightens people."

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  • Srinivas on June 28, 2012, 21:48 GMT

    Just wait and see, from now on the injuries to our fast bowlers will come down drastically. Lillee was and is a over-hyped fast bowler with very contorted action. What can such a bloke teach others? Good riddance!

  • Chandan on June 26, 2012, 17:45 GMT

    @Muhatasim: I dont claim to be half-decent bowler... unlike Dennis, the so called "legend" who was associated with the academy for 25 years and not a single genuine pace bowler to his credit... so come up with a better argument than the one you just did, fit for 4 year olds...

  • Sreejith on June 26, 2012, 16:08 GMT

    Fast bowlers who trained with the MRF Pace Foundation that went on to represent India include Javagal Srinath, Irfan Pathan, Munaf Patel, Venkatesh Prasad, Rudra Pratap Singh, Zaheer Khan and Shanthakumaran Sreesanth. Besides Indian players, foreign players like Chaminda Vaas, Henry Olonga, Heath Streak and Australian fast bowlers Glenn McGrath, Mitchell Johnson and Brett Lee have also trained at the Foundation. Sachin Tendulkar in his School days trained in the MRF Pace Foundation to become a fast bowler.

  • Dummy4 on June 26, 2012, 15:09 GMT

    is he planning 2 become the bowling coach for australia?

  • Nilesh on June 26, 2012, 14:11 GMT

    Dennis, Thank you very much for your support of the MRF Pace Academy. Before the pace academy was formed, a pace bowler in India was a "medium-pacer" by default (and that too, more of a slow medium pace). Thanks to Dennis for actually giving young Indians hope that we could have a real pace option some day. I still think that there is an opportunity for the BCCI to call in Dennis as a 1-2 week consultant once in a while (maybe once a year) to work with pace prospects in the national team (especially before a tough overseas tour of say England, Australia or SA). Also, would love closer co-operation between the MRF Pace Academy and the NCA in the future. I personally feel that Glenn McGrath would be amongst the best people to take this forward (if he is available and interested).

    I agree with Dennis' comments on Sreesanth and Munaf Patel in the sense that their talent has not matched up to their on field performances. Munaf has become much slower than in 2003 when he first arrived.

  • Muhtasim on June 26, 2012, 13:57 GMT

    @streetblader, since Lillee is leaving, maybe you can replace him

  • Vinod on June 26, 2012, 12:59 GMT

    Thanks DKL for helping indian cricket....a legend in his playing days, the complete fast bowler, Indian cricket is indebted to you....:)

  • Kishor on June 26, 2012, 12:57 GMT

    Best replacement is - Ambrose. The Ambrose.

  • Sukwinder on June 26, 2012, 11:53 GMT

    For all the ignorant people Glenn McGrath, Mitchell Johnson, Brett Lee, Chaminda Vaas, Henry Olonga, Heath Streak,Javagal Srinath, Irfan Pathan, Munaf Patel, Venkatesh Prasad, RP Singh, Zaheer Khan and Sreesanth all have trained here!!

    Even Sachin Tendulkar trained here in his schooldays as he wanted to be a fast bowler!! This foundation has been a cornerstone for Indian cricket! Thank you Dennis for everything!

  • Dummy4 on June 26, 2012, 9:56 GMT

    @naveed from which world are you? zaheer, srinath, munaf, vaas, mcgrath all have trained there.......................

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