In the first auction for the inaugural Indian Premier League, players were lined up and sold like cattles, as Adam Gilchrist famously quoted, and it was a totally new experience for everyone involved.Putting a price on a player was fraught with danger as a proven performer like Michael Hussey was bought by Chennai Super Kings for $ 350,000 which was much less compared to his brother David, for whom Kolkata Knight Riders forked out a massive $ 625,000.David Hussey was a rather unknown commodity in cricketing circles, yet the way an Indian franchise spotted a gem from Western Australia, after his T20 debut in February 2008, set the tone for franchises unearthing future Australian stars.David made his ODI debut later in 2008 and now is an integral part of Australia’s limited overs structure. The story is similar when one looks into the emergence of players like Shane Watson, Shaun Marsh, David Warner and Doug Bollinger.It’s not that ‘spotters’ from India unearthed a player for Australia. But it is evident that the IPL has proven an effective platform from where these players have grabbed the attention of those in charge Down Under.Shane Watson was not a regular member of the Australian set up, but his sensational performance which helped Rajasthan Royals clinch the inaugural season saw his stock value shoot up through the roof. His all-round abilities eventually made him a huge cog in the Australian Test team and the first season with Rajasthan, with Shane Warne as his captain, was a turning point.advertisementShaun Marsh’s exploits with King’s XI Punjab in 2008, when he emerged the tournament’s top run-getter, marked him out as a player to watch out for. Sure enough, he made his T20 and ODI debuts in mid-2008.The most interesting story is that of David Warner. The New South Wales player partnered Virender Sehwag for the Delhi Daredevils in two seasons and had been branded as a slogger. But it was simple chat with Sehwag, where the Delhi dasher urged him to concentrate on Test cricket even though he hadn’t played an entire domestic season, which ignited a spark in him. A century against New Zealand in the Hobart Test and a whirlwind 180 against India at Perth simply confirmed the belief.Even though India might be struggling to unearth true champions from IPL, the desi franchises have a penchant for spotting some bright sparks across the Indian ocean.
A local law enforcement investigator is looking to strengthen ties between small children and those in his profession. He has a message parents on how to keep from hindering this growth.“A lot of the parents say to the kids, ‘You see that guy right there, he’s gone take you away,’” Investigator Marcus Bell said.Bell said he see this in the community often and took to social media to express his concern.“That just makes me upset because I have to tell the kids no I’m not going to take you away,” Bell said.In order to combat this stigma, Bell along with other members of the local police department give out stickers, booklets and Junior Deputy badges to the children they see while out in the community.“Sometimes parents approach me and I talk the kids and I even pick them up, take a picture with them you know give them a toy badge and they love it,” Bell said. “They’ll put it on. Kids are intrigued by police officers. Not all police officers are bad.”Bell, who has worked in the Tuscaloosa County Sheriff’s Office for over 12 years, understands that parents are just trying to get their children to behave. But instead of telling children the cops are going to take them away, Investigator Bell wants to point parents and guardians in a different direction.“Once you tell a little kid that, it instills in their mind to have fear in the police and we are here to protect them that’s what I would like to see the parents do,” Bell said. “They can easily just walk up to us, we are approachable. We can talk to their kids, make them laugh, shake their hands, make them feel real comfortable. We are here to protect them, not just take them away you know.”