On Friday evening, as Union Territory Cricket Association (UTCA) got its affiliation from BCCI, 57-year-old Chandigarh cricket coach Harish Sharma was busy in a fielding session with the trainees at Sector 16 Stadium. Sharma, who joined as a coach on August 16, 1989 at the stadium, has seen the emergence of players like Yuvraj Singh, Dinesh Mongia, VRV Singh and Siddharth Kaul and it was an emotional moment for the coach.
“I guess this is the reward for all the hard work by all the coaches since the last many years. I have seen players like Yuvraj Singh, VRV Singh and Siddharth Kaul starting their days here and going on to play Punjab and later India. This decision has meant that more than 2000 cricket trainees in the city can dream about representing Chandigarh and wearing Chandigarh jersey one day,” Sharma said.
The UTCA got the affiliation Friday after the meeting between Committee of Administrators (COA) and BCCI.
“There is no other city in the region which has got such number of grounds within a small proximity. Chandigarh has been producing talents like Kapil Dev paji, Yuvraj Singh and others and the city will continue to do so. The affiliation will work as a impetus for the players. The focus should be on the development at the junior level apart from infrastructure,” said Sukhwinder Bawa, UT cricket coach.
UTCA president Sanjay Tandon said, “We are thankful to V P Singh Badnore, UT Administrator and Punjab Governor, who have taken keen interest in the issue. It has also opened doors for the conduct of International and IPL matches in the city”.