M. Venkataramana has a challenging job in the season ahead. He will not only be the coach of the Tamil Nadu senior cricket team but will also head the State Cricket Academy.
The 55-year-old Venkataramana, a former Test cricketer with 247 First Class wickets bowling off-spin, is unfazed by the demanding task ahead.
He told Sportstar on Friday, “The idea behind the move is that the transition of the talented cricketers from the Tamil Nadu Academy to the State team should be smooth.”
He added, “If one man is in control, things will be easier. During the time I am away with the Tamil Nadu team, I will be in touch with the coaches at the academy.”
Venkataramana was an integral part of the State team’s spin attack when Tamil Nadu last triumphed in the Ranji Trophy way back in 1988.
He said, “We are good in white ball cricket. Despite our ability, we have not delivered in the Ranji Trophy. We need to improve.”
Venkataramana elaborated, “We have some capable batsmen, but in the Ranji finals that we reached, we did not make enough runs.”
He added, “We, as a team, need to be tougher in the mind during high-pressure situations.”
Tamil Nadu had some handy pacemen but needed spinners for the longer format, Venkataramana felt. “We need to take 20 wickets to win. It is the bowlers who win matches.”
There is this quiet resilience about Venkataramana. Tough he certainly is.