Kolkata: Roped in as a batting consultant by the Cricket Association of Bengal (CAB), former India cricket great V.V.S. Laxman has a simple message for the upcoming generation of batsmen -- score big hundreds.
As part of Vision 2020 -- a CAB initiative to create an assembly line of players for the national team -- the Hyderabadi will be spending 30 days here annually, guiding young batsmen from West Bengal. A brainchild of former India skipper Sourav Ganguly, Vision 2020 also has Sri Lankan spin wizard Muttiah Muralitharan as a bowling consultant, who will be joining Nov 1.
"It's important to get runs and I have been a believer of getting big hundreds. If you have to make a mark and come into the Indian team, the only way as a batsman is to get big hundreds and double hundreds," Laxman said. The former right handed batsman said that scoring runs and playing impact knocks were more important irrespective of the time spent at the crease by a batsman.
"It's important to get hundreds no matter whether you get them at a strike of 50 or 150. Batting is not only about technique it's also about scoring runs. An important aspect of batting is to know your capabilities and be aware of reacting to a given situation," said Laxman.
"I am excited to see the talent here but having talent is not sufficient, there are other aspects which I hope to guide and communicate to help them realise their potential," said Laxman in relation to his new responsibility for which he was persuaded by Ganguly.
Happy and excited to be back here and at his favourite ground, the Eden Gardens, where he played the legendary knock of 281 in 2001 against Australia, Laxman was also eager to catch up on Sunday's Indian Super League encounter between Atletico de Kolkata and Kerala Blasters FC at the Salt Lake Stadium.
The match has been billed as a face-off between Ganguly, who co-owns Atletico, and Sachin Tendulkar, who co-owns Blasters. "I am looking forward to the match and I am hoping it will be an exciting match going down to the wire," said Laxman, who refused to pick a favourite.