INDIAN NATIONAL CRICKET
Yuvraj last year announced his retirement from all formats. © Getty
Over the past few days Yuvraj Singh has been kicking it out with his Punjabi teammates at the IS Bindra Punjab Cricket Association stadium. Yuvraj is urging a return in the upcoming Syed Mushtaq Ali T20 tournament. He spent a good 45 minutes in the nets, and when the ball hit his bat’s sweet spot, it became apparent that the charismatic left-hander hadn’t lost even a bit of his magical touch. About 30 Punjabi cricketers divided into two groups attended a 10-day preparatory camp ahead of a December 18 T20 tournament in Ludhiana.
However, uncertainty reigns over his return. Yuvraj has yet to receive approval from the supervisory board for cricketer in India (BCCI) president Sourav Ganguly. Puneet Bali, secretary of the Punjab Cricket Association (PCA), who asked Yuvraj to retire, told TOI: “We are still waiting for BCCI’s response.”
Yuvraj retired from international and domestic cricket, including the Indian Premier League (IPL), in June 2019, freeing himself to play foreign leagues around the world. He played for Toronto Nationals in the Global T20 Canada held in August last year and Marathi Arabs in the Abu Dhabi T10 last November.
The BCCI rule says that active cricketers in the domestic circuit are not allowed to participate in the T20 overseas leagues. Therefore, it will be interesting to see if the extravagant batsman gets a green signal from the board or not.
In addition to Yuvraj, the Punjabi selectors also named pacifist Barinder Sran on their 30-man list of odds ahead of the tournament Syed Mushtaq Ali. The 28-year-old, who played six ODIs and two T20Is for India, had previously criticized the Punjabi selectors before switching to Chandigarh last year.
The change didn’t go well for Sran, as he only managed to get five wickets in so many list-A matches, two wickets in four T20 matches, and didn’t take any wicket in the only Ranji Trophy game he played against Arunachal Pradesh. He was later visited by the Chandigarh selectors, declaring his poor run of form and has now returned to play for Punjab.
Sreesanth named among Kerala odds
Sreesanth will finally return to active cricket after the end of his ban as the fast bowler was included in the 26-man squad of odds for Kerala’s senior state team ahead of the Syed Mushtaq Ali Trophy. The T20 tournament starts on January 10th.
Sreesanth has been allowed to play since Sept. 13 this year, but with the start of the home season delayed due to the pandemic, the pacifist has been waiting to return. The 37-year-old Sreesanth and the rest of the players, including Sanju Samson, Sachin Baby and Jalaj Saxena, will take part in a preparatory camp at SD College Ground in Alappuzha from the 20th to the 30th of December