Vikram Solanki to maintain Surrey's youth pipeline and offer opportunities to youngsters

London [UK], June 20 (ANI): Newly appointed Surrey head coach Vikram Solanki is committed to maintain the club's system and offer opportunities for players to play for England and in the first team.

Six of the 30-man training squad, which England named this week ahead of the Test series against West Indies, are from Surrey.

"I'm firm of the view that if you see an example of your peers progressing - like Ollie Pope, who has gone through the whole Surrey system - then it's likely that if you're presented with a similar opportunity you'll see the path ahead. It's often the case that a crop of youngsters come through together because one comes through and achieves something special and the others think 'well, if he can, then I've every chance'," ESPNcricinfo quoted Solanki as saying.

Solanki credited Surrey's academy director, Gareth Townsend for setting up the club structure.

"The work that Gareth has done with the academy and the commitment towards developing Surrey players and offering them opportunities to play in the first team bodes well for producing England cricketers. It gives them the opportunity to show how good they are and to grow," he added.

Solanki's words could equally apply to young cricketers from the BAME communities. But while he made it clear he would welcome his promotion, as the first head coach in county cricket from the British Asian communities, in "accelerating" the progress of people from a BAME background in every walk of lie, he insisted he had not encountered racism in his own career.

"Racism in any walk of life is abhorrent. I genuinely do feel a sense of regret for anyone who has experienced that. I couldn't tell you why it's taken so long to see a British Asian head coach," he said.

"I, however, can only speak of my own experiences. I've been very lucky. At both clubs I've been involved with and in my time with England, it's not been the case in my career," he added. (ANI)