The dark clouds over the Chepauk seemed to clear only at the sight of R Ashwin walking into the MA Chidambaram Stadium on Tuesday. The Indian off-spinner, who landed in the city early on Tuesday, hardly took rest after the long journey from the US, where he was a part of the Indian squad that took on West Indies in a twoT20 series, as he led the Dindigul Dragons against Ruby Kanchi Warriors here.
There were a lot of speculations around his participation in the match. But an hour before play, Ashwin tweeted: “See you at Chepauk tonight!! Hoping for the rains to stay away” to set the twitter ablaze.
Right after the toss, Ashwin said the TNPL was needed for Tamil Nadu, which has been deprived of T20 action. “I owe it a lot to the TNCA for hosting this event. So it makes immense sense to come down and play today.
“We didn’t have cricket from Chennai Super Kings for the last year and we won’t have it for the next year as well. Though TN is a big state, we haven’t tapped into a lot of talents in the districts. This tournament is an excellent opportunity for them to excel,” Ashwin said.
About playing again at his home ground in the inaugural T20 tournament of Tamil Nadu, Ashwin said: “I have a lot of special memories on this ground. As a kid, I remember watching Sachin’s hundred against England in 19921993 series and my 12-wicket haul against Australia in 2013 are some great memories. In fact I would take this ground in my back pocket wherever I go. I have played a lot here for Chennai Super Kings wearing an yellow jersey. It’s a wonderful feeling being here,” added Ashwin.