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Tamil Nadu Premier League- Where Cricket meets Kollywood

Tamil Nadu Premier League – TNPL. Established by the Tamil Nadu State Cricket Association (TNCA) in August, 2016.

Apart from Kollywood and Tamil cinema another new entertainment that has recently evolved for Tamil audience is the Tamil Nadu Premier League also known as TNPL cricket league.

In August 2016, after watching the movie Kabali from the Albert theatre returns former Australian cricketer and CSK bigshot batsman, Mathew Hayden, the Mascot of TNPL. Hayden also visited South Tamil Nadu cities like Madurai and Tirunelveli to foster and promote the inaugural edition of the TNPL .

With the banishment of the Chennai Super kings  (CSK) from the IPL tournament for two years, there has been an obscurity prevailing in the perception of the people towards cricket.

As a drive towards bringing cricket to the districts of Tamil Nadu , to hunt for local skills and to restore the lost fame of the favorite pastime entertainment of Chennaiites, the former BCCI chief and the TNCA president who is also the managing director of India Cements Ltd, N Srinivasan and his associate RS Raman have turned up with another T-20 Tournament pointed out to as the TNPL, aiming at unveiling the talents of the domestic players in Chennai so that the IPL teams or any other team can rate them and provide them better expectancy . Thus, proving to be hope- giving to the locale players in Chennai. TNPL is pursuing the same pattern as that of the IPL series


The Match

TNPL will also feature players from the state of Tamil Nadu along with outstation players registered in Tamil Nadu with the TNCA. The tournament date is from August 27th-September 18th.The event is to be short and to be for 23 days. The 8 teams, representing different towns in the state will be featured for the inaugural title during the event. Out of a total of 27 matches that will be played in the T20 tournament. The matches would be played at three venues, namely Natham , MAC (Chennai) and Tirunelveli in the format of 12 each at the first two venues and remaining 3 at the last venue respectively.

The Bidding and the Teams

The players were picked by a draft process instead of an auction method. In this procedure, the highest bidder will get the first chance to pick a player from the draft and will continue to do so over the course of various rounds. There were 22 hoped -for bidders for the eight franchise leagues, 17 had taken part in the bidding process.  The minimum bid price was set at Rs. 1.25 crore per franchise.  The highest bid of INR 5.21 crore was made by Thoothukudi Sports & Entertainments Private Limited for the ownership rights of the Thoothukudi team. Metronation Chennai Television bagged the Siuth Chennai Team as they made the second highest bid of Rs 5.13 Crore. The Lyca productions received the Coimbatore tea, as they made the third highest bid for Rs 5.01 Crore. The Madhurai team was received by the Kothari Madras International Limited for Rs 4.001 Crore, The Ruby Builders and Promoters bought the Kancheepuram team for Rs 3.69 Crore whereas VB Cricket Academy, founded by former Indian cricketer V.B.Chandrasekhar in 1997, bought the Thiruvallur team for Rs 3.48 Crore. Dindugal (Rs 3.42 Crore) and Karaikudi (Rs 3.3 Crore) were obtained by Take Solutions Limited and Chettinad Apparels Pvt Ltd respectively.

A Glance at the Franchises and their Teams


Owned By: Thoothukudi Sports and Entertainment Private Limited for Rs 5.21 crore

Team members: Dinesh Karthik, Washington Sundar, A Aswin Crist, Abhinav Mukund, Aushik Srinivas, Kaushik Gandhi, L Balaji, Anand Subramanian, Akash Sumra, R Sathyanarayan, U Sushil, M Ganesh Moorthi, Athisayaraj D’son, Maaruthi Raghav, R Vishal, Siddharth Ahuja, V Lakshman, SP Nathan, Nakul Anand.

The team represents Thoothukudi and the logo elements consists of Palmyra, Pearl, Soil and Sea .

The stalk of the palmyra trees (the State tree) is designed to illustrate the slogan of the team TNP (Thoothukudi Namma Payaluga), and they have taken the letter ‘N’ from the slogan word and have written it so as to represent the stumps. The white dot above it represents the cricket ball and the background color, represents the color of the typical red loamy soil found throughout southern districts. The team’s name is an accolade to the numerous fighters and patriots who have hailed from the southern districts, Patriots such as Kattabomman, Bharathiyar,  Vaanjinathan. and V.O. Chidambaram

Mrugang Desai has been turned on as the team’s mentor. Former Ranji player J.R. Madanagopal, who had shaped the fortunes of Vijay CC, will be the coach. His brother D.J. Gokulakrishnan,  will be the bowling coach C. The Team Manager  will be Madhusudhan and Marketing Manager is Sudharshan

GV Prakash kumar has composed the team anthem written by Arun raja kamaraj.

kovai-kings-logoLyca Kovai Kings

Owned By: Lyca Productions Private Limited which is a Chennai-based movie production and Distribution Company, for 5.01 crore. The production house was recorded to be connected to former Sri Lanka president Mahinda Rajapaksa and hence the group faced opposition from several pro-Tamil pressure groups during the release of action movie “Kaththi”, starred by actor Vijay in 2014. Subaskaran Allirajah owns Lyca Productions and is a Sri Lankan Tamil businessman. He is the founder and chairman of the Lycatel and Lycamobile groups of companies.

Team Members: Murali Vijay, Syed Mohammed, M Mohammed, Surya Prakash, Vijay Shankar, Siva Kumar, R Rohith, K Vignesh, Anirudh Sita Ram, Ajith Ram, Harish Kumar, Akshay V Srinivasan, B Arun, Anchit, M Kamalesh, Tarun Srinivas, Adithya Giridhar, Gowtham T Kannan.


The logo was launched by Bollywood superstar Akshay Kumar and eminent film director Shankar. The logo consists of a regal shield coat-of-arms style depiction of the team name with twin lions on either side. Reflecting the group’s British origin. The group is an international corporate giant.

The name “Lyca Kovai Kings” was selected to evoke the rich royal history of the western belt and the five stars represent the quality that the Lyca group brings to both the entertainment and sports industries.

Coach: ODI specialist in South Africa’s Lance Klusener  will be coaching the team. Lyca had signed former Tamil Nadu player C Hemanth Kumar and current state cricketer R Prasanna as part of their coaching staff.


Chepauk Super Gillies TH30GILLIES_2951630f

Owned By: Metronation Chennai Television Private Limited (which owns Thanthi TV) for 5.13 crore. They represents South Chennai

Metronation Chennai Television Ltd. runs and manages English news and current affairs channel, NDTV HINDU.

Team Members: R Sathish, Yo Mahesh, Thalaivan Sargunam, Antony Dhas, KH Gopinath, R Sai Kishore, U Sasi Dev, Joel Joseph, D Tamil Kumaran, R Alexandar, Vasanth S Nan, B Rahul, Ashwath M Than, S Karthik, Raji Abdul Rahman, PS Nirmal Kumar, Vasudevan, Aditya Barooah, V Shibi Jawahar.

The Metronation Television Chennai Pvt. Ltd. has announced the name of its Tamil Nadu Premier League franchise as, ‘Chepauk Super Gillies’ and they have their tagline as ‘Pattaya Kelappu’, with a logo comprising a helmet, two bails, and a lighthouse.

The team name and logo were picked from a fan contest. The team has Hemang Badani as their head coach


imagesMadurai Super Giants

Owned by: Kothari (Madras) International Limited for 4.01 crore

A subordinate company of the Chennai-based Kothari industrial Corp. Ltd. The group runs a textile business. The team has been named as Madurai Super Giants representing Madurai and their logo consists of a raging bull. The logo was released by Virender Sehwag.

Team Members: Arun Karthick, Suresh Kumar, Thiyagarajan, Francis Rokins, DT Chandrasekar, Vignesh Ganapathi, M Raja, Shijit Chandran, L Vignesh, Maan K Bafna, S V Muruganantham, S Aswin Kumar, P Amarnath, Varun Narendra, P Sakthi, Anton Andrew, R Mihir, Edward Kennedy, C Madhu.

Coach Former Australian cricketer Michael Bevan has been named as the head coach of the Madurai Super Giants franchise in the Tamil Nadu Premier League (TNPL).


Kanchi Warriorskanchi-warriors-logo

Owned By: Ruby Builders and Promoters for 3.69 crore

Team Members: B Indrajith, J Kaushik, R Jesuraj, Shahrukh Khan, Bharath Shankar, AC Parthiban, K Varun Kumar, M Prabhu, J Kaushik, L Ganesh, Adithya Ganesh, Siddharth Siva, R Suthesh, Nilesh S Nian, Akhil Sri Nath, Pradosh Ranjan, Mitchell Mannays, Trilok Nag, B Aditya.

Coach: Former Australian speedster Brett Lee has joined the team as their mentor and brand ambassador

Thiruvallur Veerans

Owned By: VB Cricket Academy for 3.48 crore

thiruvallur-veerans-logoTeam Members: B Aparajith, Abhishek Tanwar, R Kavin, NS Chaturvedi, R Rohit, GV Vignesh, Sanjay Yadav, S Arun, Samruddh Bhat, Hari Nishaanth, M Lakshminarayanan, D Govindaraju, Jagannath Srinivas, Silambarasan, U Mukesh, Rahil Shah,  S Samuel, Malolan Rangarajan, S Shiv Santosh.

Former India cricketer and national selector VB Chandrasekhar, who won the Thiruvallur franchise rights in the Tamil Nadu Premier League for Rs 3.48 crore, has named his team VB Thiruvallur Veerans. His VB Cricket Academy will be running the team.


Dindigul Dragons

Owned By: Take Solutions Limited for 3.42 crore Dindigul-Dragons-Logo

Take Solutions Limited is into supply chain and life sciences. They have designated their team as Dindugal Dragons to exemplify the power and potency of the team .Former Indian off Spinner, M Venkataramana is delegated to coach the team. Their logo denotes a ferocious, fire breathing dragon and a fiery shield bearing the team name . The team’s tag line  ‘Idhu Neruppudaa’, showcased on the logo , denotes the team’s bold attitude to dominate the tournament.


Team Members : Ravichandran Ashwin, Murugan Ashwin, T Natarajan, MS Sanjay, N Jagadeesan, Ganga Sridhar Raju, V Siva Subramania, Sunny Kumar Singh, K Mukund, Wilkins Victor, Ashwin Venkataraman, S Shyam Sundar, S Dinesh, Yazh Arun Mozhi, Prashanth PRabhu, S Abhishek, R Vivek, Adithya Arun, M Silambarasan.

Karaikudi Kalais

Owned By: Chettinad Apparels Private Limited for 3.30 crore

Team Members : S Badrinath, Sunil Sam, S Lokeshwar, C Ganapathi, Vishal Vaidya, S Aniruddha, R Sonu Yadav, R Rajkumar, S Mohan Prasath, M Abhinav, A Jerome, Srinivasan R Mayne, L Kiran Akash, M Suresh Babu,S Sujay, S Swaminathan, M Shajahan.

Coach: Robin Singh, Shoaib Mohammed Khan,  M Vijay Kumar,.

L Sivaramakrishnan, former India leg-spinner conducted the draft ceremony and observed the eight franchises select a total of 151 team members out of the 888 team members that had registered to be part of the league.19 team members were selected by every team except the Lyca Kovai Kings which have only 18. Washington Sundar , joined Thoothukudi franchise and  was the first Under-19 player to be selected.

TNPL 2016 Venues

All the venues for the events, Chennai, India Cements Ground in Tirunelveli and Natham in Dindigul are equipped with flood lights. Chennai will be hosting the opening match as well as the semi-finals and the final.

(Their logo yet to be unveiled)

A few of the Rules while setting up the teams

  • None of the teams are allowed to use the word ‘Chennai’ in their team name as it’s already taken by CSK.
  • No member of TNCA could participate in the bidding process and therefore one of the vice presidents, Albert Muralidhar , resigned from his post in the last executive committee meeting so that he can participate in the event as he was part of Thoothukudi Sports team.
  • Each franchise can elect 19 members from the draft, a member from the district and a member from the under- 19 category.

The prize Money

Rs 1 crore will be provided as the prize money to the winners of TNPL while the runners-up will receive Rs 60 lakh. The semi- final teams will receive Rs. 40 lakh each and the remaining teams will receive Rs 25 lakh. The event also provides for an opportunity to the domestic team members to exhibit their talents, thus promoting them and providing scope for better prospects.

The lone bidder for the media rights was Star India for Rs 7.1 crore for at least five years. Therefore, Star India will be the official broadcaster for the event with the telecast being   vernacular .

The different teams in TNPL are trying to bring in the most glamorous and influential Kollywood celebrities to promote their team.

TNPL brings a brand new event and entertainment to the Tamilnadu audience when the state starves for both international cricket and IPL

TNPL is expected to be an every year event and get better over time, its no wonder TNPL model would be replicated in other states based on the success and reach it achieves in Tamil Nadu. So as of now all other states are closely watching the progress of TNPL.

MS Dhoni recently participated in the trophy introduction function which was held grandly and introduced the TNPL 2016 trophy.