Anil Kumble, the BCCI’s technical committee chairman, emphasised that the Board-sanctioned TW3 age-verification test does not challenge or question the age specified by the parents or the concerned under-16 player.
Speaking on the sidelines of a function, Kumble said: “When a boy fails the TW3 test, it doesn’t mean that we are challenging the fact that he is not under the prescribed age 16.
“It’s only that the one who fails the test is ineligible to play at the under-16 level. There is confusion over this because parents think we are questioning the veracity of their claim, which is not the case.”
The former India captain said that TW3 is the best available age-verification process at the under-16 level though he cautioned that it is not entirely fool-proof.
“TW3 is the best age-verification process available at the moment and widely used across South Asian countries. At the moment there is no other option than to follow the best method in our hands. It’s true that there might be genuine cases that are proved wrong in the tests. I have discussed this issue at the technical committee,” Kumble said.
It may be recalled that a few months ago, six under-16 Karnataka cricketers were found over-age through the TW3 test though most of them had the relevant documents to prove their age.
“One of the boys who failed the test has grown up in front of me and I know his family well. I know that their claims are right but nothing can be done as such. Some boys grow up fast and their physique belies their age.
“TW3 can be used only to determine whether the boy is plus or minus 16. It cannot ascertain age at any other time. So for those who failed the test, it’s important to think positively and be optimistic about the opportunity waiting at the under-19 level,” Kumble said.