TNPL 2019: Will Puducherry players miss out?

Skipper D. Rohit and Thalaivan Sargunam, both specialist batsmen, might not be available for the Madurai side since they would be turning out for Puducherrry in the Ranji season. 

Siechem Madurai Panthers’ Arun Karthick scored 472 runs in 10 matches, the highest in the TNPL 2018, at an impressive strike rate of 153.74.   -  B. Jothi Ramalingam

TNPL champion Siechem Madurai Panthers could be without some of its leading cricketers in the upcoming edition of the competition. 

Skipper D. Rohit and Thalaivan Sargunam, both specialist batsmen, might not be available for the Madurai side since they would be turning out for Puducherrry in the Ranji season. 

And there are indications that K.B. Arun Karthick, the driving force of Madurai side’s sensational TNPL triumph last season, could be moving from Kerala to Puducherrry as a Guest Player for the Ranji Trophy.

An experienced top-order batsman with innings building skills, a handy ‘keeper and good thinker of the game,  Karthick brings a lot to the table and the TNCA too is keen on having him back in its fold.  

Karthick, who hails from Tamil Nadu, has played for his home state in the past before travelling to other places to showcase his skills.

READ: TNPL 2019: Season four full schedule

A move to Puducherry will provide Karthick a guaranteed spot in the eleven but then Tamil Nadu, striving to rebuild its side after two disastrous seasons, is also interested in Karthick.

If Karthick decides in favour of Puducherry, his participation in TNPL will be in serious doubt. 

In any case, Puducherry could have a combative Ranji team this season, with several cricketers drawn out of Tamil Nadu.

Classy off-spinning all-rounder S. Suresh Kumar, batsman Anand Subramanium, wicket-keeper batsman S. Karthik and off-spinner A.C. Pratiban may not be turning up for their franchises in TNPL since they have all got permanent jobs in Puducherry and are likely to represent the Union Territory in the Ranji Trophy.  

On its part the TNCA says it has no objection in the Puducherry cricketers taking part in the TNPL. “Any cricketer who is born in Tamil Nadu is eligible to play in the TNPL according the TNCA Constitution. We have no objection to them playing in the TNPL,” said a TNCA official to Sportstar.

ALSO READ: Arun Karthick: TNPL champion with a Yo-Yo score higher than Kohli

However, the BCCI is of the view that if a cricketer represents a particular State in domestic competitions, he cannot take part in Twenty20 leagues in another State. 

The TNCA official said, “The players can perhaps approach the court on the issue. They could win the case.”

The coming days promise to be interesting.

(With Inputs from Dipak Ragav)