What’s the story?
Tamil Nadu skipper Abhinav Mukund, who was not picked by any of the IPL franchises in the ongoing tenth edition of the T20 competition, announced that he will be heading to Bangladesh soon to play in the Dhaka Premier Division Cricket League.
According to the Times Group report, Mukund, a veteran of over 100 first-class matches, will feature for Tamim Iqbal-led Mohammedan Sporting Club in the List A competition, which got underway on April 12.
Mukund said that he is looking forward to playing in Bangladesh as it is more competitive than heading to somewhere like England, where he played club cricket in 2014 for Leicester-based Loughborough Town.
“I will be leaving for Bangladesh on Sunday. I'm going there to get some games under my belt during this off-season. The standard of cricket is good and some top cricketers are part of that league. I'm expected to be there for around three weeks,“ Mukund said.
In case you didn’t know...
The Dhaka Premier Division Cricket League is in the fifth year of its existence and sees 12 teams facing off against each other in the round-robin format before heading to the knockout stages.
Many Indian cricketers like Dinesh Karthik, Pawan Negi, Manoj Tiwary and Yusuf Pathan have played in the 50-over competition in the past while the likes of Unmukt Chand and Parvez Rasool are part of the league in the ongoing edition.
Mohammedan, who have lost two of their three matches so far this season, will be looking to bolster their batting department with Mukund’s addition as they look to progress to the knockout stages.
The heart of the matter
Having played for Chennai Super Kings and Royal Challengers Bangalore in the previous editions of the IPL, it was surprising that none of the IPL franchises decided to bid for Mukund, who had set his base price at Rs 30 lakhs ahead of the 2017 auction.
Even more so when you consider the fact that Mukund was the top scorer in the final of the inaugural edition of the Tamil Nadu Premier League in 2016 scoring 82 for Tuti Patriots who won the trophy defeating Cheapauk Super Gillies.
With the number of injuries in the IPL increasing by the day, there was still a possibility that the 27-year-old could be approached by any of the IPL franchises as a replacement, but the opening batsman felt that he would be better off getting some game time sooner rather than later.
According to Mukund, it was his conversation with state teammate Dinesh Karthik, who played for defending champions Abahani Limited in the 2016 edition of the Dhaka-based league, that convinced him to head to Bangladesh for the short stint.
Mohammedan are badly in need of some batting reinforcements with skipper Tamim Iqbal their lone shining light in the three matches so far, only one of which have ended up in their favour.
Their next fixture is against Khelaghar Samaj Kallyan Samity on Monday followed by matches against Victoria Sporting Club and Legends of Rupganj on April 27 and 29 respectively.
Despite some solid performances in the inaugural edition of the TNPL and his past IPL experience, Mukund didn’t find favour with any of the franchises for the tenth edition of the IPL. So it is a good move from the left-handed batsman to venture into Bangladesh and get a few matches under his belt.
The experience of playing in a different country is something which will only benefit Mukund as he attempts to claw his way back into the minds of the Indian selectors and add to his tally of 6 Test caps, the last having come against Australia at Bengaluru earlier this year.