Venkatapathi Raju at the ACC Office in Kuala Lumpur
Picture by Ganesan Sundarammoorthy

The ACC has appointed former India international cricketer Venkatapathi Raju as its new Development Officer. He replaces countryman Venkatesh Prasad in the role. Raju played 28 Tests and 53 ODIs for India in a first-class career that spanned 18 years.

Raju, as he likes to be called, joins the ACC after spells as coach for Hyderbad and Orissa in Ranji Trophys, as a vice president of the Hyderabad Cricket Academy and a selector for India from 2006 to 2007. Highly regarded in his playing days as a left-arm spinner and gutsy bat, he is a Level II coach and Bowling Action Analyst. "The ACC is doing a lot but when I look back on my career as a player and coach I think that the main area of development comes for a cricketer in the U-19 years. Having played in the first Youth World Cup in 1988 (with fellow ACC Development Officer Aminul Islam), I understand that this is the time when the cricketer really gets the recognition from all around and starts to understand how good they can be. No doubt the game is different now to what it was when I was playing, in terms of more aggressive stroke-play and gym culture but the basics remain the same. It is a constant battle between bat and ball and there is always room for a good left-arm spinner in any team," says Raju.

He is expected to take over development duties in the same countries that were Venkatesh Prasad's: Qatar, Thailand and UAE, as well as assuming High Performance roles. "Countries will benefit from greater linkages with Test-playing countries' state and youth teams. The only way to really improve as a cricketer is to play a lot of cricket against good players in a good set-up. I'm very much looking forward to contributing to the work of the ACC." Raju starts with the ACC on a two-year contract.

ACC Development Program
Venkatapathi Raju Cricinfo Profile

Filed February 20th, 2013