Kochi Tuskers Kerala, which is making its debut in the 2011 edition of the Indian Premier League, on Wednesday introduced its players and launched its promotional logo for the Twenty20 tournament starting on Friday.
The team is slated to meet Royal Challengers Bangalore in its opening match at the Jawaharlal Nehru stadium on April 9.
The team’s video was unveiled by Kochi IPL franchise in the presence of actor Jayaram at a function.
Talking to reporters, KTK coach Geoff Lawson said the team’s captain Mahela Jayawardene, who made 103 in the World Cup final against India, was expected to join the team on the match day.
“We have four World Cup players — Mahela, Muttiah Muralitharan, Thisara Perera and S Sreesanth. They have to be fresh and deserve a rest. Unfortunately, Mahela will be around on match day while Indian pacer Sreesanth, Murali and Thisara are expected to join the team tomorrow,” Lawson said.
On Sreesanth, who had played only two matches in the World Cup, he said he was an experienced cricketer.
“It is good for us that he had not played much cricket. The Kochi team is a new team. There are lot of challenges. The management had an enormous task putting the team together. It was a difficult birth for this franchise,” he said.
Another member VVS Laxman is an experienced player. “There are challenges. But we are confident of performing early on. We are looking to play well and win games. There will not be any excuses of not behaving well as a team.”
The team had a practice session on Wednesday and will be training on Thursday also.
KTK has been working hard under Lawson and their hard work will reap good results this season, Mukesh Patel, one of the directors, said.
Vivek Venugopal, one of the directors, said Kochi has lot of local talent and KTK gives them a forum to expose their talent in the International cricket arena.
The promotional video was shot at the picturesque Varapuzha capturing the beauty of the backwaters. It also showcases the home ground of Kochi Tuskers — Jawaharlal Nehru stadium.
Ace Bollywood film maker Priyadarshan conceptualised the video based on the theme song for the team. The music is composed by acclaimed music director Ousepachen and Thiru is the cinematographer.
The video is based on the theme song which is just two minutes long.
Kochi had bought 17 players from the IPL 2011 auction by signing five specialist batsmen — Mahela Jayawardene, VVS Laxman, Brad Hodge, Owais Shah and Michael Klinger, besides six bowlers — Sri Lankan off-spinner Muttiah Muralitharan, Sreesanth, RP Singh, Ramesh Powar, Vinay Kumar and Stephen O’Keefe.
Other team members are: Ravindra Jadeja, Steve Smith, Thisara Perera and John Hastings, Brendon McCullum and Parthiv Patel. The team has 10 more Indian players including Kerala Ranji captain Raiphi Vincent Gomez.