Pakistan news April 6, 2010

Intikhab Alam focuses on grassroots improvements

Cricinfo staff

Intikhab Alam, the new head of the National Cricket Academy in Pakistan, has announced a programme to bring about improvements at the grassroots level, and club cricket. The initiative will go beyond just cricketing skills and prepare players for all aspects of a modern cricketer's life.

"The NCA is introducing an eight-week programme to coach the players at the club level first and then pick the best ones for the second phase to hone their skill," Alam said during a press conference at the NCA.

"At the NCA they will learn English, how to use the computer, how to deal with the media, how to eat and even how to use the bathroom facilities. I don't know, but as coach of the national team I feel that the boys don't even know the basic things such as these," Alam said.

The two-month initiative will start from April 12, with coaching camps at all the 11 regions of the PCB. NCA-appointed coaches, assistant coaches, trainers and analysts would regularly visit the clubs in all the regions in order to hone players' skills. "In the first phase, only those clubs, which have a proper ground and carry on regular activities, would be involved," Alam said. He added that coaches would also be trained by NCA staff as a part of the programme.