© IANS
Former BCCI President N Srinivasan© IANS

Former Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) President N Srinivasan has voiced his views on his company India Cements acquiring the Indian Premier League (IPL) franchise Chennai Super Kings (CSK). Srinivasan said that India Cements had the permissions of former IPL chief Lalit Modi and then BCCI President Sharad Pawar to purchase Chennai-based CSK. Even back then, few people in the BCCI had raised concerns over this acquisition as Srinivasan was a BCCI office bearer. Srinivasan further went on to speak about how MS Dhoni helped CSK gain nationwide fanfare and views on CSK becoming a household brand. Srinivasan also added that come IPL 2018, CSK will make a grand entry to the world of Twenty20 (T20) cricket and be the leaders that they were before being banned by the honorable Supreme Court for 2 years. Former MP G Vivekanand elected as Hyderabad Cricket Association President

As reported by Sportstarlive, Srinivasan while addressing at the Madras Advertising Club’s annual award function, opened up about IPL and CSK. He said, “We received an invitation from the then chairman of IPL (Lalit Modi) asking whether India Cements would bid. So I took this letter and wrote to the then BCCI president Mr (Sharad) Pawar asking if we can bid since I was the BCCI treasurer and MD and promoter of India Cements. Although everyone knew this story, they chose to ignore it.”

He further added, “I get a reply back from Mr Pawar saying that ‘I have consulted all my colleagues and there is no bar on India Cements to take the tender and bid for an IPL team’. This was given in writing from him and following all due processes, the BCCI was asked and we went ahead.”

Srinivasan went on to elaborate how CSK got MS Dhoni, “Before the first auction, we told the group which was sitting there to get MS Dhoni at any price. People criticise it and made all kinds of allegations, but still its [CSK’s] followers have only grown. Wherever I go, thanks to the power of CSK, there is not a single place where people don’t want to come and take a selfie with me. How did we get there? The first truly game changing decision was to get MS Dhoni on board. He had won the World T20 in 2007, had his own style and was different from others.” Kohli’s availability for RCB to be known by 2nd week of April

Speaking about brand CSK and the famous Whistle Podu anthem, Srinivasan added, the Tamil anthem, the colour yellow, the ‘whistle podu’ song along with Dhoni helped build the CSK brand. We have not been part of the IPL for two years but it has not affected the brand one bit.”

Srinivasan was quick to oppose the ban imposed on CSK by the SC for a period of 2 years; 2015-17. “You can accuse anybody of anything but you can’t accuse a single player. They just played. It was just pure jealousy,” he voiced.

Speaking about the return in 2018, Srinivasan added that, “Come 2018, there is every possibility of it happening. We will be back with a bang.”