TNPL 3 to get underway with Dragons vs Warriors clash

If the Supreme Court gives the green signal, can Dragons and Warriors field outstation cricketers for the inaugural game itself, beginning at 7.15 p.m.?

Ravichandran Ashwin of Dindigul Dragons cools off with team-mates after a practice session at India Cements Ground in Tirunelveli.   -  K. Pichumani

It’s time for the big hits and the toe crushers. Also on view will be the slower ones from pacemen and spinners’ flighted deliveries with revolutions.

Twenty20 cricket is not about power alone. Deception too has a place in this otherwise hectic format.

The third edition of the Sankar Cement-Tamil Nadu Premier League, the competition gets underway here on Wednesday night with a contest between Dindigul Dragons and Ruby Trichy Warriors, promises much action.

However, with the apex court ruling on TNCA’s plea for clarifications on the participation of outstation cricketers in TNPL expected only on Wednesday, things are far from clear on this front.

If the Supreme Court gives the green signal, can Dragons and Warriors field outstation cricketers for the inaugural game itself, beginning at 7.15 p.m.? It will be a race against time but first the top court has to give the nod.

Ahead of the tournament opener, there was much activity at the India Cements ground here. It’s a lovely, open venue where a strong wind could blow across, creating possibilities for bowlers.

Cricket in the districts has its own flavour. There is unbridled enthusiasm, the stands are packed and the atmosphere does lift the players.

And both Dragons and Warriors should enjoy the setting for the tournament opener.

Led by India all-rounder R. Ashwin, Dragons has ‘impact’ cricketers. None more than the skipper who comprehends the dynamics of the format.

Dragons’ pacemen M. Mohammed, M. Silambarasan and R. Rohit could find some assistance on a fresh pitch.

The aggressive Jagadeesan will be the key man in Dragons’ batting; if outstation player Hanuma Vihari is cleared to play, then the side’s batting will be stronger.

The Baba Indrajith-led Trichy Warriors will be without star batsman M. Vijay, who will be playing preparatory games in England ahead of the Test series.

Indrajith has footwork and strokes and D.T. Chandrasekar is a handy left-arm spinner but a recurrence of a back injury to key paceman Aswin Crist — he has been ruled out of TNPL — is a blow to the side. Can the experienced D. Tamil Kumaran, a skiddy customer, fill the breach?  

Match starts at 7.15 pm.