The BCCI will start specialised under-16 and 19 cricket academies in Chennai, Mumbai and Chandigarh from May this year. A meeting in this regard, attended by hand-picked coaches from different parts of the country, was held here on Wednesday.

The academy in Chennai will focus on spin bowling and wicketkeeping. Emerging batsmen will be guided in Mumbai while pace bowlers will receive attention in Chandigarh. The academies will function throughout the year.

According to informed sources, off-spinning great Erapalli Prasanna, former India leg-spinner L. Sivaramakrishnan and left-armer D. Vasu have been short-listed to hone the skills of young spinners at the academy in Chennai. The lack of depth in the country’s spin bowling stock is an area of concern for Indian cricket.

Former India wicketkeepers Sameer Dighe and Vijay Yadav are expected to be in charge of ’keeping.

Lalchand Rajput, a former India opener, and K.P. Bhaskar are likely to handle the batting aspects. Former India pacemen Karsan Ghavri, Balwinder Singh Sandhu and Madan Lal have also been short-listed as pace bowling coaches.

The idea behind setting up the academies is to take some load off the National Cricket Academy and impart training in specific areas to cricketers with promise.

The coaches will receive a salary of approximately two lakh rupees per month.

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