THE SITUATION AT Delhi’s pre-season Ranji Trophy camp is going from bad to worse, with the team’s senior-most player Gautam Gambhir staying away on the second day of net practice at the Feroz Shah Kotla Stadium.
Gambhir, who has been named team captain according to the probable list issued by Anil Jain, joint secretary of sports, was present at the camp on day 1, but the lack of basic practice facilities frustrated the former Indian opener. Add to it, the absence of a head coach, which meant Gambhir ended up supervising as many as 45 cricketers.
The DDCA’s failure to provide basic training equipment has resulted in Gambhir missing out on his own preparations. There has been a delay in the appointment of selectors this season, owing to the sports committee election results that are yet to be announced. It is learnt that Gambhir is playing the waiting game, and will only return to the camp once the situation is under control. The players underwent some basic drills on Tuesday at Kotla, but were forced out of net sessions due to underprepared and damp wickets.
The DDCA is known to be in shambles ever since three different lists from as many office bearers were circulated, clearly indicating that politics has taken precedence over cricket. Former Indian all-rounder Madan Lal, who has been named chief mentor, is yet to show up at the camp.
“The current situation in the DDCA is such that former players like me are reluctant to get involved in coaching or mentoring because everyone wants to play politics. While I am ready to support Delhi cricket currently there is so much of in-fighting, which in-turn in hurting cricket. It is a shame that Delhi cricket has been brought to his level,” he told The Indian Express on Monday.