Sreejesh keen to play for TN in Murugappa Gold Cup

Defender Rupinder Pal Singh also eager to represent the state in the Murugappa tournament.

With the Asian Games set to conclude on September 2 and the Murugappa Gold Cup beginning on Sept. 6, Sreejesh said it is very much possible for him to play in Chennai.   -  K. MURALI KUMAR

Indian hockey goalkeeper and captain P.R. Sreejesh has expressed his desire to represent Tamil Nadu in the MCC-Murugappa Gold Cup hockey tournament to be held here from September 6 to 16.

“Definitely. I am a TN player and I will play for TN only,” said Sreejesh to Sportstar on Tuesday. “I will be available depending on the dates. But first, Hockey India needs to permit me. I have asked Renuka Lakshmi ma'am, Secretary of Hockey Unit of TN, to send a request letter to Hockey India.”

The 30-year-old said, being a registered player from Tamil Nadu for 10 years, he has every right to represent the State. “If you have to play for another State, you have to get a NOC from TN. But I think in my early career, TN helped me a lot to become what I am now. I have decided to play for TN only. I am not a registered player from Kerala but TN,” said Sreejesh, who works with the Education Department in Kerala.

With the Asian Games set to conclude on September 2 and the Murugappa Gold Cup beginning on Sept. 6, Sreejesh said it is very much possible for him to play in Chennai.  “After Sept.2, I will be free. If there is no camp, then Hockey India will allow us to play in domestic tournaments,” he said.

The last time Sreejesh played in a domestic tourney was in 2013. “I was the captain of TN then, and after that, I haven’t played in any local tournament in India as I was busy with the National camps,” he said.

Defender Rupinder Pal Singh has also been eager to play for TN in the Murugappa tournament.   -  AP

 

Renuka Lakshmi said apart from Sreejesh, defender Rupinder Pal Singh has also been eager to play for TN in the Murugappa tournament. “Both the players’ participation will be a big boost for TN and the tournament itself,” she said.

B. Vijay Kumar, Secretary of Madras Cricket Club, said traditionally there has been only one team from TN, and this time, V. Baskaran, president of Chennai Hockey Association, has asked the organisers to include a Chennai XI. There has been a TN XI (comprising players from districts) for the last three years. “The Organising Committee will take a call on whom to include as the tournament nears,” said Vijay Kumar.

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