The Indian Premier League governing council has agreed that no Sri Lankan players, officials or backroom staff will be involved with IPL 6 action in Chennai. This comes following a hurried tele-conference among IPL bosses and franchises after Tamil Nadu Chief Minister Jayalalithaa wrote to the Prime Minister saying Lankan sportspersons were not welcome in Chennai during the IPL starting April 3.
With several teams, including former champions Chennai Super Kings, having top Sri Lankans in their ranks, the IPL bosses were sent in a tizzy after the Jayalalithaa letter. The governing council has decided that no Sri Lankans will feature in matches in Chennai, which will host 10 games in the tournament ending on May 26. Watch
In the wake of the political unrest against Sri Lankans in Tamil Nadu, Jayalalithaa said in her letter that with emotions in her state running high over the Sri Lanka issue, it would be unadvisable for the Lankan players, umpires and other officials to visit Tamil Nadu. "In such a hostile and tense environment, we apprehend that the participation of Sri Lankan players in the IPL tournament, with many games to be played in Chennai, will aggravate an already surcharged atmosphere and further offend the sentiments of the people," says the letter.
Chennai is scheduled to host 10 IPL games and ticket sales are going to start on Wednesday. CSK will play eight 'home' matches in Chennai the other two being playoffs - Qualifier 1 and Eliminator.
Interestingly, the president of the Board of Control of Cricket in India and CSK owner, N Srinivasan told NDTV in an exclusive interview on Monday that the IPL was in safe hands and all apprehensions around the participation of Sri Lankan players were exaggerated. He added the BCCI was unaware of teams being asked to drop their Sri Lankan recruits.