HindustanTimes Mon,29 Dec 2014
Webster roped in to drive home a psychological point
Amol Karhadkar, Hindustan Times
Pune, May 22, 2012
First Published: 00:06 IST(22/5/2012)
Last Updated: 00:49 IST(22/5/2012)

Although the Indian Premier League has been beset by controversies, the cricket board is looking to rope in experts from the league to help improve the domestic cricket. As a step in that direction, the BCCI has invited Dr Rudi Webster, the renowned sports psychologist from the West Indies.

The Grenada-based Webster, who has worked with India players in the past, will make a two-day visit to the National Cricket Academy (NCA) in Bangalore after the IPL tournament concludes on Sunday.

"At the end of the IPL, I am going to the NCA to talk to the coaches," Webster, who is with the Kolkata Knight Riders as mental conditioning expert, told HT. "I will try and impress upon them the importance of the mental aspect of the game. We are paying little attention to it, but that is where we need to stress more on."

The 72-year-old has worked with cricketers for over four decades, and helped players like Clive Lloyd, Viv Richards, Ian and Greg Chappell. He also briefly worked with the Indian team before the 2007 World Cup.

Urgent need
Despite having mentored a number of cricketers and mental conditioning experts, Webster feels there is no need for domestic teams to hire a mental conditioning expert full-time.

"What I would like to see is the coaches and assistant coaches learn a little bit about this aspect, how to help players with their mental problems, their concentration levels and things like that," he said. "Some of them already do it to some extent but not as good as they ought to do. How do you concentrate, when do you concentrate, how to keep away from distractions, these are the things they should give more stress on. If they can give some attention to that component of performance, it will help the younger players a lot."

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