Coaches must not get too technical: Allan Donald

Pune Warriors bowling coach has high praise for Umesh Yadav, Ashok Dinda



Pune: Allan Donald, a legend in his own right, spoke to The Telegraph on Saturday.

The following are excerpts

Whether life is more ‘stable’ now...

(Smiles) I’m pretty settled at the moment. Obviously, it’s great to be back in South Africa (after a short stint in New Zealand)... I was the happiest person in the world when I got the call from Gary Kirsten.

[Donald has also worked with England and in Zimbabwe.]

Being the bowling coach of South Africa and the Pune Warriors India...

When you go into a group and find the likes of Morne Morkel, then you aren’t going to tell the guys much. When I was playing, all I wanted from a coach was a word of advice... I think my work really starts when somebody is out of form. At the international level, you can’t teach the guys anything technical anymore... You need to inspire them, motivate them.

Working for an IPL franchise...

One is working with a much bigger group, as opposed to a Test or an ODI squad... It’s important to understand why somebody isn’t in form. Equally, one has to understand why somebody is in form. As the Warriors’ bowling coach, it’s my job to ensure that even those who don’t get to play regularly stay sharp.

If his presence overawes the younger lot in the bowling unit...

To talk of the Warriors... There was a pre-IPL camp in Lucknow, where we broke the ice... We had three days of bonding... The guys were like ‘we can ask anything and everything’... Sometimes, they don’t come up to me... So, I go to them and ask if they’re happy, if they’re OK. I have quite liked the atmosphere.

Whether there’s a list of dos and don’ts for a bowling coach...

One should strategise on a day to day basis, not to get too far ahead of yourself. In Test matches, it often gets down to session by session.

If there’s something bowlers don’t want to hear...

They don’t want things to be over-complicated... They don’t want coaches to be too technical. Having been a bowler myself, I understand their psyche. Indeed, across the board, coaches must not get too technical.

On rating Ashok Dinda highly...


I like Dinda because he’s competitive, he has everything a fast bowler needs to have... He’s not tall, but is an exceptional talent, with very good skill... When I look at a fast bowler, I first look at his attitude... Out in the middle, he has to be competitive... Today, in my view, Dinda is in the top-five in India... He just has to be consistent and must stay fit.

Umesh Yadav making such a splash...

Yadav was the stand out bowler in Australia... Is a good athlete and has been bowling so well in the IPL too... He’s got a good engine, is a strong man who consistently bowls in the 140s and above. After Jawagal Srinath, Yadav is the first in India to be so strong, be so fast and be such an athlete. Watch out for him.

If the selectors were right in resting the 24-year-old Yadav for the Asia Cup...

Even youngsters need to be rested... Yadav bowled a lot in Australia, so it was OK to give him a break... You may not rest bowlers in Test matches, but certainly in ODIs. In South Africa, we’ll have to rest Dale Steyn and Morkel at some stage. Because of the volume of cricket being played, that has become necessary. Rest is paramount.

Vernon Philander having a dream run...


Vernon’s set to be a great bowler, for he has all the attributes... He can swing the ball both ways and, on wickets with some assistance, is more than a handful. You won’t find him bowling in the 150s, but he’ll be in the lively 130s, bowling in incredibly narrow channels.

If South Africa has the best pace attack...

Quite a few teams are right up there... South Africa, Australia, Pakistan... Even England... There’s talent in India... Someone somewhere keeps coming through with something special.

On James Pattinson...

He’s a lovely bowler... Quick, with great rhythm and a strong body... Michael Clarke believes Pattinson will eventually become the best fast bowler in Test cricket... He’s been having fitness issues, but that’s the same with many others.

His message to youngsters...


While talent is important, one needs the physical attributes too... Once you’re strong physically, start believing in yourself. How does a youngster believe in himself? By following his dreams and by backing himself. Coaching at the schools level is so critical. Right now, it’s pathetic... I intend starting a programme, back in Bloemfontein, focusing on schoolkids... They’re crying out for something that I have in mind. Even their parents want a programme.

Working with Gary, South Africa’s head coach...

Gary’s unbelievably forward-thinking... His philosophy is individual responsibility, with individuals making decisions for themselves... He wants a team which is self-reliant where decision-making is concerned... He’s created a calmness in the dressing room, working closely with Paddy Upton (the mental conditioning coach).

Finally, being on the same side as Sourav Ganguly, India’s most successful Test captain...


The respect for the guy is way up there... Sourav’s got an aura about himself. It’s easy to captain when you’re winning, not so when the team is losing. He’s tried his best.

Matches

MORE TOP STORIES TODAY

Duminy steals first win for Delhi

Duminy steals first win for Delhi

Furious fifties by Duminy and Dinesh Karthik end a long losing streak for the Daredevils. More »

AB, Parthiv seal Bangalore's second win

AB, Parthiv seal Bangalore's second win

Royal Challengers overcame a stutter to cruise to the small target they were set by Mumbai Indians. More »

Glenn Maxwell carves his parallel universe

Glenn Maxwell carves his parallel universe

Glenn Maxwell seems to project an icy disdain when at the crease. Match situations rarely faze him and the bubble in which he plays excludes everyone … More »

Srinivasan can attend BCCI meeting

Srinivasan can attend BCCI meeting

His status as president of TNCA makes him eligible to attend the Working Committee meeting on Sunday. More »

No way back for Pietersen: ECB

No way back for Pietersen: ECB

Kevin Pietersen's hopes of reviving his international career appeared to end Saturday when ECB managing director Paul Downton said there was 'no way back'… More »

[REWIND] The world record that nearly wasn't

[REWIND] The world record that nearly wasn't

Twenty years ago this week, Brian Lara became Test cricket's highest scorer, but he almost didn't make it. More »

Moores gets second stint as England coach

Moores gets second stint as England coach

In a two-year spell from 2007 to 2009, the 51-year-old Moores led England in seven Test series. More »

Bangladesh senior players to see shrink

Bangladesh senior players to see shrink

Bangladesh's senior players will have three sessions with a psychological skill development coach later this month More »

BCCI is not anybody’s property — Dalmiya

BCCI is not anybody’s property — Dalmiya

Dalmiya feels that Srinivasan’s ‘power hungry’ attitude isn’t helping matters. More »

KP ridicules idea of day-night Tests

KP ridicules idea of day-night Tests

Kevin Pietersen has ridiculed the idea of day-night Test cricket, saying the game would be so different to proper Test cricket that we will need a whole… More »

Rajasthan edge low-scoring thriller

Rajasthan edge low-scoring thriller

The bowlers restricted Hyderabad to 133 for 6 before Rahane and Binny took Rajasthan over the line. More »

Tough for bowlers: Saeed Ajmal

Tough for bowlers: Saeed Ajmal

The 36-year-old believes the T20 format and rule changes in 50-over matches have made a real difference. More »

Maxwell blitz takes Punjab home

Maxwell blitz takes Punjab home

The Kings XI batsman blasted a 43-ball 95 to help his team pull off a massive chase against Chennai Super Kings. More »

BCCI members want independent probe

BCCI members want independent probe

The board members are realising after the Supreme Court's observations that something has to be done — IS Bindra More »

'BCCI lacks leaders to take on Srini'

'BCCI lacks leaders to take on Srini'

Two former BCCI presidents, Shashank Manohar and Jagmohan Dalmiya, have reacted strongly to the news of the BCCI calling an emergent meeting on Sunday… More »

Delhi look for first points against confident Kolkata

Delhi look for first points against confident Kolkata

Preview — The threat of Sunil Narine looms large again. More »

Bangalore vs Mumbai: A battle of the big-hitters

Bangalore vs Mumbai: A battle of the big-hitters

Preview — Given the firepower in both line-ups, Dubai crowd may see another high-scorer More »

Yuvraj tees off to Sharjah's delight

Yuvraj tees off to Sharjah's delight

Yuvraj Singh was hardly convincing to begin with against Delhi, but a big dose of crowd support and a helping of poor bowling meant he had the opportunity… More »

Stressed Trott stands down again

Stressed Trott stands down again

The England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) on Friday confirmed that batsman Jonathan Trott is to take another break from all cricket with immediate eff… More »

PCB starts another coach hunt

PCB starts another coach hunt

The PCB has decided to not extend the contracts of head coach Moin Khan, fielding coach Shoaib Mohammad and batting consultant Zaheer Abbas, and has invited… More »

Fiery star Stokes bids to curb his temper

Fiery star Stokes bids to curb his temper

England all-rounder Ben Stokes admits he must keep his anger under control if he is to end his international exile. More »

Bangalore's arsenal blazes to victory

Bangalore's arsenal blazes to victory

Yuvraj Singh was back to his best in his first match for Royal Challengers Bangalore. More »

Pakistan cricketers face probe

Pakistan cricketers face probe

Pakistani cricket authorities have launched an investigation after a number of current international stars played in exhibition matches in the United States… More »

BCCI to meet before next court hearing

BCCI to meet before next court hearing

The BCCI will hold an emergent working committee meeting on April 20 to discuss the future course of action with regard to the Supreme Court hearing concerning… More »