P.V. Ramana - 1986 Asian Games bronze medallist and former international spiker - shared his experiences and thoughts with team members of Bengaluru Torpedoes on Thursday, ahead of the Rupay Prime Volleyball League (PVL) which begins at the Gachibowli Indoor Stadium here from February 5.

The 59-year-old Ramana, father of champion shuttler P.V. Sindhu, told the players that the key to success could be strengthening the defence and having very good blockers.

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“Whichever combination is tried, it should be ensured that it creates an opening for the big smashes to score crucial points. Obviously, the central blocker and the two side-blockers play a major role,” the Arjuna Awardee told Sportstar .

“Yes, in volleyball even ‘lifters’ have to be on a different plane in terms of tactics to complement their teammates’ efforts,” said Ramana, who even played the game for a few minutes, giving glimpses of his heydays as a lead player, while Sindhu watched from the sidelines .

The Arjuna Awardee felt that PVL was much-needed for the sport as players across the country were short on match experience and that the league gave them the perfect platform to watch foreign players and pick up a few aspects of the game to be better players.

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“There is no money even from our playing days. So, this PVL also assures some sort of financial comfort to the players even while trying to make a mark to make it to the national team,” said Ramana.

“We were lucky to have some of the big names around when we played the game, like Jimmy George, Cyril Valloor, Abdul Basith, Sandeep Sharma, Sreedharan,” he said.

“I feel that every sport in India should have these kind of leagues as all that is needed is a one-month window to host. Look at the kind of impact on football, kabaddi, badminton, hockey (when Premier Hockey League was first introduced) the leagues have had,” Ramana concluded.