HPCA to reach out to remote corners

The state association will be developing a scout-system app which promises to be a trend-setter.

In a first, the HPCA, following Vikram Rathour’s initiative, will launch an exchange programme with other States.   -  Vijay Lokapally

The Himachal Pradesh Cricket Association (HPCA), driven by former India opener Vikram Rathour’s ambitions plans, will soon be the first BCCI unit to reach out to remote corners of the hilly State by employing modern technology.

With help from former India batsman Jatin Paranjpe’s company, khelomore.com, the HPCA will be developing an App which promises to be a trend-setter.

“We’ll be using the App to cover every aspect of the game, from matches to tournaments, scoring and stats, and even injury management,” said Rathour here on Saturday.

“Himachal lacks public transport and it is not easy for people to commute if they don’t own a vehicle. We have four superb grounds (in Bilaspur, Una, Dharamshala and Shimla) but the idea is to take the game to smaller places,” Rathour added.

According to Rathour, the app will help the HPCA draw an elaborate scouting system. “We’ll start with school grounds. We’ll provide them with two cement wickets, one coach, and all the other equipment. We want to have 30-40 kids per centre, out of which the best three shall come to a bigger centre for camps and matches. This App will connect all the sub-centres to the Centre of Excellence.”

Modern facilities

Among some modern facilities at the stadium here, the HPCA plans to have a retractable roof. “We need to make sure that the CoE is functional round the year. The retractable roof will help us achieve that. It could be the first of its kind in India. You do need a place to practise when it’s raining but my opinion is that outdoor practice is always better than indoors.”

The CoE here boasts of 16 outdoor pitches, two cement surfaces and five indoor. “This is the best cricketing facility of its kind in the country,” claimed Rathour.

In a first, the HPCA, following Rathour’s initiative, will launch an exchange programme with other States. “We are in talks with Andhra, Bengal and Punjab. We will have competitions for juniors among us. We shall exchange our coaches and players for regular camps to understand the playing conditions better. We can have such arrangements with international teams too,” Rathour concluded.