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Raj Chaudhuri is the head of cricket at Worth School in Sussex

 

An ECB level 4 coach who also runs his own cricket academy. Raj played first-class cricket in India between 1989 and 2000 as an opening batsman.

 

What school (s) did you go to?

 

Don Bosco School in Kolkata India.

 

What's your earliest sporting memory?

 

Playing tennis ball matches on the street as a young kid in adult teams against local opposition.

 

Who were your sporting heroes growing up?

 

Sunil Gavaskar, Imran Khan and Viv Richards

 

What is your best sporting memory of school?

 

Winning all but one tournament  we played in the last three years at school and scoring runs in every final to help my side win and the friendship that formed since then amongst all the team mates.

 

What is your worst sporting memory of school?

 

Getting run out for nought without facing a ball in my debut for the school as a 13 year old in an U19 game.

 

Can you recall a memorable sporting teacher?

 

Yes Mr Vijayan Bala who was instrumental in our success as a cricket school in identifying talent and backing us. The values of hard work, punctuality and discipline were instilled very early. Later on Father Jose Parapully, the deputy head, and our school coach Mr Debu Mitra also helped us immensely.

 

What sports do you play these days?

 

Cricket and table tennis

 

In what other ways do you stay healthy?

 

Gym and cricket practice. I work out about four times a week and also manage to have a few hits with the senior boys when I get time. On top of that, being a full-time coach keeps me on my feet a lot as does throwing a few hundred balls a week.

 

What is your favourite sporting memory?

 

My first-class hundred. It was against Bengal for Tripura and I managed to get my highest first-class score of 136no having opened the batting. Incidentally Bengal won the Ranji Trophy that year as well.

 

What's been your most embarrassing sporting moment?

 

Dropping a dolly as a pro in a league game in the UK. It was a really easy chance at square leg and I wanted the ground to open up and swallow me.

 

What's your biggest sporting bugbear?

 

Youngsters watching T20 rather than proper batting. That is the last format they need to play and watch and not the other way around. Yes T20 has been good for the game from a revenue point of view but the general standard of batting and spin bowling has gone downhill. Fielding standards however have gone through the roof.

 

When was the last time you cried at a sporting event?

 

A long time back.... something had changed for the worse in my game and although I was trying very hard the feel wasn’t there. I wasn’t able to figure out the reason at that time and it affected me terribly.

 

Which three sports people would you like to have around for dinner and why?

 

All my heroes are mentioned above but the problem is I would be too tongue-tied to talk at dinner with them around.

 

 

 

 

 

 

MY SPORTING LIFE