Lahore – Sports Reporter:
The National High Performance Centre continues its transformation in order to provide the country’s elite and emerging cricketers with opportunities to hone their skills at the state-of-the-art facilities in Lahore by introducing latest, modern and widely used digital and scientific tools.
In the latest step in that direction, the NHPC will introduce hi-tech data collection across all the rungs of the game played in the country.
The digital data collection with the help of a leading software company will be used from the very basic grassroots to first-class cricket, which will facilitate the coaches at the City Cricket Association and Cricket Association in scouting and helping the world-class coaching staff of the NHPC in player analysis and assessment as well as the selectors.
The High Performance department of the Pakistan Cricket Board, under which the NHPC operates, is also in the final stages of the implementation of digital scoring. It has attracted applications from candidates wishing to enhance and upgrade themselves in the field of scoring from 4-7 June and will be providing lectures about digital scoring to bring them up to speed with the changing trends.
Meanwhile, the NHPC has hired the services of world-renowned nutritionist company, Close Nutrition, in its bid to develop safe supplement strategy for players.
Through this consultancy, the players will be provided diet plans in accordance with their individual physical demands and those of the touring teams. Players undergoing rehabilitation will be provided one on one consultancy and the current lot of strength and conditioning coaches will be up skilled through mentorship programmes.
Close Nutrition is owned by Graeme Close who is an expert nutritionist working as a consultant to England Rugby and Aston Villa FC. He is also the head of performance nutrition to the European Tour Golf and Ryder Cup Team and provides nutrition support to several world-class athletes. He is a former professional Rugby League player and professor of human physiology at Liverpool John Moores University where he is the programme leader for the MSc in Sport Nutrition.
Graeme has published over 150 papers, reviewed articles and spoken at over 50 conferences across the globe.
He is the deputy chair of the Sport and Exercise Nutrition Register (SENr) and a fellow of both The British Association of Sport and Exercise Sciences (BASES) and The European College of Sport Sciences (ECSS).
Separately, the PCB is in the final stages of appointing Chief Medical Officer, psychologist and head physiotherapist as part of its drive to bolster it medical department with an aim to provide best medical facilities to its professional and emerging cricketers so that their careers can not only be protected but also prolonged.
Already, fitness centres inside the NHPC in Lahore and Hanif Mohammad High Performance Centre in Karachi have been refurbished and upgraded. This will provide international standard training and fitness facilities to cricketers attending high performance programmes in these centres.
Director – High Performance, Nadeem Khan: “Our ambition is to not to limit these advancements only to the National High Performance Centre, but also seep them into the high performance centres across the country so cricketers at all levels can benefit from them.
“The world of cricket is fast-evolving and getting data-centric and it was important that we also step up our efforts in innovation and inculcate scientific practices in our structure which will benefit our cricketers.
“Fitness is an integral part of our sport today and in this regard the NHPC has hired services of Close Nutrition which is a top-class nutrition consultancy service and provides desired diet and supplement plans to leading organisations and athletes around the world to further facilitate of our cricketers.
“We will also be introducing digital scoring which will help in the identification of the top performing cricketers at the grassroots. The National High Performance Centre has made significant strides in up skilling the current lot of cricketers by bringing some of the best cricketers of their time as coaches and will continue to make all the efforts to make it a top-class facility.”