ICL: Indian Cricket League

Muralitharan unsure of Bengal stint


murliMuttiah Muralitharan has said he is yet to sign a contract to play for Bengal in the 2008-09 Indian domestic season and that his priority will be to represent Sri Lanka. He said he was still unsure about his availability though the Cricket Association of Bengal (CAB) had got clearances from Sri Lanka Cricket and the BCCI.

The player’s manager had also earlier confirmed to Cricinfo that he would be available to play about four matches for Bengal, subject to no clashes with international commitments.

“The Lankan board chief [executive], Duleep Mendis, has sent across a fax to us, mentioning that Muralitharan will be available for Bengal in the upcoming first-class engagements,” Jagmohan Dalmiya, the CAB president, said earlier. However, the CAB were unsure which games Murali would play.

Murali said he was eagerly awaiting the home series against Zimbabwe, comprising two Tests and three ODIs. “I am looking forward to Zimbabwe’s tour beginning November 7. Then, in January we play in Bangladesh, so it remains to be seen whether I am at all available for Bengal,” Muralitharan told PTI.

With the Ranji Trophy beginning on November 3, and Bengal playing away to Assam in their opener, chances are slim that Muralitharan may play a crucial role in the team’s bid to perform well in the Ranji Trophy Plate League, which will help them earn promotion to the Super League next season.

Muralitharan said he was also contracted with the IPL franchise, Chennai Super Kings, for three years and was committed to them as well. Having finished as runners-up in the inaugural season of the league, he will also represent the Super Kings in the Champions Twenty20 League to be held from December 3-10.

The group phase of the Plate League is scheduled from November 3-December 4 with Bengal playing five games before the knock-out stages.

Source:Cricket News

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