NEW DELHI: Former Indian batsman and Sunrisers Hyderabad mentor VVS Laxman expressed his pleasure because the 14th version of the Indian Premier League get underway in Chennai tonight.
Defending champions Mumbai Indians led by Rohit Sharma tackle Virat Kohli-led Royal Challengers Bangalore in what guarantees to be a cracker of a contest.
In his column for the Times of India, Laxman wrote, “A brand new season of the world’s most widely followed T20 league is just a few hours away, and there is the inevitable sense of expectant anticipation.”
Laxman restrained himself from choosing up a favorite for the title as all of the groups pack a punch and are sturdy contenders for the championship.
“This season, more than ever before, all eight teams in the Indian Premier League wear a formidable look, which guarantees thrills galore over the next eight weeks. History suggests it’s crucial to begin well and get on a roll, though there have been instances of teams mounting a late charge towards the later part of the league phase and riding that momentum through the playoffs,” Laxman added.
Last 12 months’s delayed event was shifted to the United Arab Emirates however the 14th version returns to India, the place the coronavirus state of affairs has worsened considerably in latest weeks. The surge in new instances may but scupper plans to host the event in bio-safe bubbles at six venues throughout the nation.
“The tournament is back in India after the UAE adventure last time around, which was impeccably organised and went by without any glitches. The challenges are more daunting, especially with the second wave of the pandemic sweeping through the country and the caseloads mounting every day. It is incumbent on everyone associated with the tournament to remain disciplined and strictly adhere to the Standard Operating Procedures so that all the action is focussed on what happens out in the middle and we come out victorious in our battle against the coronavirus,” Laxman opined.
Just like final 12 months, the IPL this time additionally shall be out of certain for followers and shall be held behind closed doorways, however within the opinion of Laxman, absence of followers will definitely not imply a drop within the depth degree of the gamers.
“There were concerns last year that the intensity of the players might drop as they play in front of empty stands and spend the duration of the tournament in bio-secure bubbles. Those fears were unfounded; digging deep into mental and physical reserves, the players put on a show to remember. Last season was the closest ever, just one win separating the fourth-placed team from the side that finished last,” Laxman wrote.
Just like final 12 months within the UAE, no workforce will get dwelling benefit even in Indian situations.
“Now, even though the tournament is back home, no team will have the advantage of playing in their own backyard, which provides the level-playing field so crucial to a tournament of this nature. International players of various nations have been in bubbles almost non-stop from last August, and it’s a credit to their fortitude that they have still been able to perform at their best. As management, it’s our duty to ensure we take as good care of them as possible – physically and mentally – so that the monotony of living in a bubble doesn’t get to them,” Laxman added.
Sunrisers Hyderabad have been one of probably the most constant groups within the IPL over the past 5 years. Since profitable their solely IPL title in 2016, SRH have all the time made it to the play-offs however failed to complete on high.
“We at Sunrisers Hyderabad have taken over three full floors in our Chennai hotel, with a dedicated swimming pool and gym accessible only to those in our team bubble. The idea is to put the players at ease and make them feel as comfortable as they can under the circumstances, without having to worry about non-cricketing issues. As the Sunrises mentor, I am extremely excited at the resources at our disposal ahead of our opener, against Kolkata Knight Riders on April 11,” Laxman signed off.