Vinod Kambli, the former India cricketer, is out of work and is seeking assignments in cricket to make ends meet. There was a time in the early 1990s when Kambli was one of the hottest stars in Indian cricket having made a sensational start to his career. In the first seven Tests of his career, Kambli amassed 793 runs at an average of 113.29, including two double centuries. But leading a flashy lifestyle proved to a distraction for Kambli, and after making a total of nine comebacks into the team, the door finally shut on the former left-handed batter.
Today, Kambli’s only source of income is the ₹30000 pension that he receives from the BCCI, and for that he is grateful. But at the same time, Kambli is willing to taking up cricket-related assignments to sustain his family. “I am a retired cricketer, who is completely dependent on the pension from the BCCI. My only payment [source of income] at the moment is from the Board, for which I am really thankful and grateful. It takes care of my family,” Kambli told Mid-Day in an interview.
“I need assignments, where I can work with youngsters. I know Mumbai have retained Amol [Muzumdar] as their head coach, but if anywhere I am needed, I am there. We have played together and we were a great team. That’s what I want them [current Mumbai team] to do…to play as a team. I was seeking help from the MCA [Mumbai Cricket Association]. I came into the CIC [Cricket Improvement Committee], but it was an honorary job. I went to the MCA for some help. I have a family to look after. I told the MCA many times that if you require me, I am there whether it is at the Wankhede Stadium or at BKC. Mumbai cricket has given me a lot. I owe my life to this game.”
Kambli did engage himself in a couple of coaching stints in the past. In 2019, he coached a team in the Mumbai T20 League, and was part of the Tendulkar Middlesex Global Academy where he guided young cricketers. But Kambli had to give up the latter as Nerul was too far for him to travel and the assignment would take a toll on him physically. Kambli mentioned that although good friend Sachin Tendulkar is aware of his financial situation, he has put a cap on his expectations.
“He [Sachin] knows everything, but I am not expecting anything from him. He gave me the TMGA (Tendulkar Middlesex Global Academy) assignment. I was very happy. He has been a very good friend. He has always been there for me,” Kambli said. “I would go to the Shardashram school, where I would eat food when the team met. That’s where Sachin stood up as a friend. I came from a very poor family.”
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