Robin Uthappa on Kerala’s radar

Kerala Cricket Association wishes to rope in the Karnataka batsman as its opener.

Robin Uthappa has represented only Karnataka in the Ranji Trophy.   -  K. Bhagya Prakash

Kerala Cricket Association (KCA) has thrown its net far and wide and has begun to look for high profile cricketers to join the state squad. Earlier this month, it had successfully roped in World Cup winning coach Dav Whatmore as its head coach.

A Kerala cricket administrator, who did not wish to be identified, told IANS that Robin Uthappa was a high-profile player the KCA was targetting. “His mother is a Keralite, while his father hails from Coorg and he plays for the Karnataka Ranji team and he speaks Malayalam fluently. The Kerala team badly seeks an opener and he has been performing very well in the ongoing [Indian Premier League]. Things are being talked out and if things churn out well, Uthappa will be opening for Kerala this season,” the official said.

Every Ranji state squad can include up to three players from outside the state. Kerala has the services of Iqbal Abdullah, Jalaj Saxena and Bhavin Thakkar. Of the three, KCA wishes to retain only one and hence is scouting for two.

Due to Whatmore’s busy schedule, the 63-year-old Australian has agreed to coach the Kerala senior squad for just six months.