Guru Greg splits Team India!
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Guru Greg splits Team India!

Chappell has devised a novel method to improve his players' performance: Divide the squad.

india Updated: Sep 09, 2006 13:40 IST

India's cricket coach Greg Chappell has devised a novel method to improve his players' performance: divide the national squad in small pieces.

Chappell launched a week-long training camp for Team India at the National Cricket Academy here on Wednesday by calling up just five of the squad's 16 players for the action on the first two days.

The remaining players will be split in two further groups to enable "Guru Greg", as the former Australian captain has been nicknamed by the media, to devote personal attention to each cricketer.

"This rolling camp is about developing individual players, so by making them better we can make the team better," Chappell said.

"I will talk to each player to see what their needs are and what areas they need to work on over the next couple of days.

"I want to give the players as much variety as possible. If we do the same thing day in and day out, we are not going to do much as a team or as individuals."

Rahul Dravid's squad is preparing for a tri-series against world champions Australia and the West Indies to be played in the Malaysian capital of Kuala Lumpur from September 12-24.

A bowling machine that delivers balls from a considerable height has also been summoned by Chappell to prepare the batsmen for tall fast bowlers in other teams.

"There are certain teams around the world who have height in their fast bowlers," said Chappell. "We have to simulate as much as possible."

The Indians are desperate for action after spending a fruitless two weeks in earlier this month in Sri Lanka, where a bomb blast and bad weather prevented any matches from being held.

South Africa withdrew from a scheduled tri-series due to security fears before heavy rain in Colombo washed out a hurriedly arranged bilateral series between India and the hosts.

"Sri Lanka was disappointing but there was nothing much we could do about it," Chappell said. "We have to make the most of the opportunities now."

India are scheduled to host the ICC Champions Trophy in October-November, the second biggest tournament after the World Cup featuring all 10 Test-playing nations.

First Published: Aug 30, 2006 15:05 IST