Eight captains arrive in Chennai to sign pledge

Chennai Super Kings captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni is already in town with his team, Royal Challengers Bangalore skipper Virat Kohli reached on Thursday afternoon.

M.S. Dhoni and Virat Kohli at the M.A. Chidambaram Stadium in Chennai on Thursday.   -  K. PICHUMANI

The captains of the eight Indian Premier League teams travelled to Chennai on Thursday to attend the mandatory captains’ meet and sign the ‘fair play’ pledge.

While Chennai Super Kings captain, Mahendra Singh Dhoni, is already in town with his team, Royal Challengers Bangalore skipper, Virat Kohli, too reached the city on Thursday afternoon. Some of the other skippers checked in late in the evening.

Though there were talks that eight captains could be available for the inauguration, top officials at the Board of Control for Cricket in India confirmed to Sportstar that the captains will gather for the mandatory meet and then record the pledge before leaving on Friday evening.

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“With the tournament a day away, pre-recording the pledge will help the captains to go back for their respective matches and preparation camps,” the officials said.

There will be no opening ceremony this time around. The members of the Committee of Administrators will hand over Rs 20 crore to the Indian Armed Forces and a military band would perform followed by the screening of the pre-recorded pledge.

“In a tournament like the IPL, it is important to ensure that players are given enough rest and now that the pledge signing and the meeting will be held earlier, the captains can rejoin the team well in advance,” one of the franchise officials said.

In the tournament opener on Sunday, Chennai Super Kings will play Royal Challengers Bangalore at the M.A. Chidambaram Stadium.

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