'Learning fast bowling at MRF Pace Foundation helps quicks succeed everywhere'

Last Updated: Sun, Feb 24, 2013 11:00 hrs

The MRF Pace Foundation is the ground zero for the world's emerging young pace men, and according to its chief coach, Myluahanan Senthilnathan, if a quick can be taught the art of fast bowling at the academy then he can succeed just about anywhere.

For 25 years young fast bowlers have came to be trained under the facility's long-time director and co-founder, Dennis Lillee, and who are continuing to be drawn by his successor, Glenn McGrath, the Sydney Morning Herald reports.

Brett Lee, Mitchell Johnson and a young McGrath have been through here, so have Chaminda Vaas, Shoaib Akhtar and handfuls of leading Indian quicks, the paper said.

Among the new pupils through the gate in June, when a camp is held in extreme summer, will be Australia's next generation stars Patrick Cummins and Mitchell Marsh, it added.

A noted hub for spin bowling, the subcontinent seems a strange place to be sent to learn the ins and outs of world-class pace.

Senthilnathan said bowling the lengths that you might bowl in Australia won't work here in India, adding what fast bowlers can learn here as well is reverse swing, which is so important.

Senthilnathan added with the skills the quicks pick up here they can survive the subcontinent, not just India but in four Test-playing countries: Sri Lanka, Pakistan and Bangladesh as well.

Senthilnathan further said the facility was started only as a service to the country, adding they did not really have any fast bowlers except for Kapil Dev, and now it's open to bowlers from all over the world.

Fifteen young bowlers from different countries are chosen to train here at a time. There is a gym, a video review room, and a full-sized oval on the other side of the school, the paper reported.

Students stay in a seven-bedroom bungalow four kilometres down the road and are treated to the expertise of a sports doctor, physiotherapist and a dietitian. (ANI)

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