Nyt fra Down Under

Lørdag d. 24. november 2012 kl. 12:00 af Henrik Pfaff

Klubbens tidligere anfører Bobby Chawla er kommet godt i gang med sit seneste cricketeventyr, som pt. udspiller sig i Australien - Læs her; GREAT DANE: Danish international Ajay Bobby Chawla has coached Elwood to three wins in its first four matches this season

IN MARCH, as the top four sides in the Longmuir Shield played finals, Elwood players and staff could do nothing but watch after winning just two games for the year.

Change was needed. So the club, seeking to make a mark in the City of Moorabbin Cricket Association's top flight, recruited a coach from, of all places, Denmark.

Leg-spinner Ajay Bobby Chawla had been representing Denmark for more than a decade and at 29 wanted to develop his coaching.

He applied for the Elwood job and was delighted when they responded.

'I applied online and Elwood got back to me and it seemed to be a really good fit,' he says.

'There are a lot of good young players here who need to be looked after and managed and that appealed to me. It's a very professional, well-run club.'

This season, with Chawla as playing coach, the Elwood first XI has won three of four games and sits fourth on the Longmuir Shield table.

Chawla has five wickets and two half-centuries and is feeling good about himself. 'I feel like I'm at the top of my game at the moment,' he says.

Chawla arrived in Australia on September 20 and works as a mortgage broker in Brighton.

Prior to that, he was playing with Denmark in the ICC World Cricket League Division 4 in Malaysia. Chawla took six wickets at an average of 25.16 as Denmark finished fourth of six teams. 'I have been blessed playing for Denmark,' he says. 'It has taken me all over the world.'

Denmark was once in Division 1 of the ICC World Cricket League but Chawla says the country lost of a lot of good players. But he believes things will turn around as more money is invested.

'I do see Denmark being more than a fringe team,' he says. 'We're trying to be a bit more professional in everything we do.'

He says the turnaround at Elwood has come with greater discipline. 'I come from a more professional world of cricket, where you need to be training and performing well to get picked,' he says. 'I'm big on discipline and structure. At first some of the players didn't know what I was doing but we're seeing results.

'A lot of guys are getting runs and bowling better and I'm told the fielding has lifted on last season.' As for himself: 'I feel pretty good. I think as a spinner you mature as you get older and my batting and bowling have come a long way.'