MRF Pace Foundation and Cricket Australia Silver Jubilee Celebration
July 19, 2017: MRF Pace Foundation, India’s premier coaching facility dedicated to pace bowling established by MRF Ltd, India’s No: 1 tyre manufacture is celebrating 25 years of its tie-up with Cricket Australia.
This is a unique partnership which over the last 25years has benefitted trainees from both the sides. The collaboration started in1992 when the legendary Australian cricketer Dennis Lillee was the Director ofMRF Pace Foundation. It is notable that Glenn McGrath, the current Director,was among the trainees who first visited the Foundation in 1992 in the firstbatch of the programme.
The arrangement has enabled trainees from Australia tovisit the Pace Foundation every year and, similarly, trainees from MRF PaceFoundation get to visit the Australian Academy. As a result of this exchangeprogramme, when the Australian trainees visit the Pace Foundation, they get toplay in different climatic conditions and learn to bowl in Indian pitches thatare generally dry and with low bounce, which is not conducive for pace bowling.
At times, a full-fledged team with batsmen andspinners from Australia visit Pace Foundation and play some matches toexperience what it takes to play cricket in Indian Sub-continental conditions.Many Australian cricketers have benefited from this programme such as GlennMcGrath, Brett Lee, Mitchell Johnson and Josh Hazlewood, to name a few.
In return, trainees at Pace Foundation visit theNational Cricket Centre, Cricket Australia. In earlier days, they had theopportunity to be a part of the Australian Academy Team and participate in theEmerging Players’ Tournament, which includes teams from South Africa, NewZealand and India. This helped trainees to learn to bowl in differentconditions, and in bouncy Australian pitches.
Currently, two of Pace Foundation trainees from Indiavisit the National Cricket Centre in Australia every year, where they gettested for 3D bio-mechanical analysis and get to train and play matches withother trainees. Many Indian cricketers have benefited from this programme suchas Zaheer Khan, T Kumaran, and Varun Aaron, to name a few.
Gracing the function to mark the occasion were Mr. KMMammen, Chairman & Managing Director, MRF Ltd; Mr. Arun Mammen, ViceChairman &Managing Director MRF Ltd; and Mr. Rahul Mammen, ManagingDirector, MRF Ltd.
Speaking about his association with MRF Pace Foundation,Glenn McGrath, Director, MRF Pace Foundation said, “Itis delightful to know that I made it to the Foundation as a trainee in thefirst batch of this programme. Life has come full circle, where today I amstill with the Foundation, not as a trainee but as its Director. It’s a greatfeeling.”
Speaking about the occasion, Mr.Rahul Mammen,Managing Director, MRF Tyres Ltd., said, “We areindeed happy to have this collaboration with Cricket Australia. It’s agreatopportunity for trainees from both sides to explore and get experienced playingin varying climatic and surface conditions. Also, it gives us an opportunity tobenchmark our training capabilities alongside the training methodologiesadopted in Australia. We would be happy to continue this tie-up, which at theend of the day benefits the game of Cricket.”