BCCI is experimenting with age-detection software and wants to reduce costs by 80 percent

In addition to the existing TW3 method, the BCCI will use software to detect age fraud on a trial basis with the aim of reducing costs by up to 80 percent.

BCCI, which has a zero-tolerance policy on age fraud, currently uses the TW3 method (based on left hand and wrist X-rays) for age determination.

Immediate result

The current method costs Rs 2400 per bone test and takes around 3-4 days while the suggested use of BoneXpert software gives an instant result and costs only Rs 288.

The whole process was explained in a BCCI note: “The X-rays are taken in the presence of an independent BCCI observer in the respective home centers of the national associations in the X-ray center and sent to the BCCI-AVP department.

“The BCCI AVP department compiles them in an appropriate format and sends them to two (2) independent radiologists on the BCCI panel for bone age interpretation. Reporting also takes time as we have about 4 radiologists making assessments from 38 federations and each radiologist interprets from about 8-9 federations.

“It can take anywhere from a day to three to four days for the associations’ reports to come in from the advisors, depending on the workload and the number of players. The whole process takes about two (2) months to complete.”

The board is working with the state associations on the experiment. “Although we are satisfied with the test data performed on the limited number of X-rays in our database, we would still like to carry out a test on a large number of X-rays (approximately 3800) across all dressings in order to be fully satisfied with the work to be the software.

“Therefore, we propose to use this software on a trial basis along with our traditional method of manual interpretation of X-ray images by the radiologists,” the note added.

Rampant theme

Age fraud is rampant at the age group level across the country. In June 2019, Jammu and Kashmir pacesetter Rasikh Alam was banned for two years after he was found guilty of submitting a false birth certificate.

U-19 World Cup star Manjot Karla, the Kolkata Knight Riders and Delhi batsman Ankit Bawne are among the cricketers found guilty of concealing their age.

In August 2020, the BCCI had introduced a voluntary disclosure system for registered players to explain if they had tampered with their date of birth.

All cricketers committing age fraud, including older men and women, will be hit with a two-year ban by the BCCI. “Age cheating is a serious matter and is detrimental to the health of sport. Many youngsters who are supposed to play in a certain age group don’t make it due to age cheating.

“As the BCCI is taking strict measures to contain this, it is only prudent for players to come forward and abide by the instructions issued by the board,” said then NCA chief and current India head coach Rahul Dravid following the announcement the volunteer said disclosure scheme.

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