Team-bonding activities have been in vogue ever since Rahul Dravid started mentoring India’s junior teams and continuing the tradition, the World Cup-bound under-19 squad is spending a couple of days at the Kabini Forest Safari at the Nagarhole National Park as part of that exercise.
BCCI GM (Cricket Operations) Saba Karim and National Cricket Academy COO Tufan Ghosh told PTI that the entire exercise has been designed in consultation with NCA director Rahul Dravid, who mentors the India A and Under-19 squads.
“It’s a two-day team bonding exercise and not a boot camp or anything. If I remember, earlier an India A team had also gone to the Nagarhole National Park. We keep having these activities for u-19 and A teams. This is not for the senior team though which has its own schedule,” Karim told PTI on Monday.
The Nagarhole National Park is in the Mysore district of Karnataka.
COO Ghosh then explained that the BCCI has engaged with a company which organises these team-bonding activities, including ‘Tiger Safaries’.
“The boys in the India U-19 team come from various parts of the country. This kind of team bonding exercise helps them build relationships, grow trust which is required in team environment. Also certain activities are designed which can test how they react to different situations,” Ghosh said.
“The boys enjoyed a Tiger Safari today. In fact, I am told, that they spotted a couple of tigers at various points. A company which designs these kind of programmes consulted the coaches as well as (NCA head) Mr Dravid to formulate a set of activities,” he said.
Asked if the players will have boot-camp like activities, which are physically strenuous, Ghosh answered in the negative.
“Boot camp has an army connotation but this is not like a boot camp.”
It must be recalled that when Dravid was the chief coach, the U-19 batch of 2016 which featured the likes of Rishabh Pant and Ishan Kishan had a trekking session as a team-bonding exercise.
The under-19 World Cup will be held January next year in South Africa.