‘Form and fitness’ key for S Sreesanth’s return in Kerala domestic team

Kerala head coach Tinu Yohanan said that the team is in touch with the veteran.

Sreesanth. (Photo by Gareth Copley/Getty Images)

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On Sunday, September 13, S Sreesanth would have breathed a sigh of relief after his seven-year ban from cricket ended. From 2013 onwards, his career on the field went into the doldrums after the spot-fixing scandal while playing for the Rajasthan Royals (RR) in the Indian Premier League (IPL). The fast bowler hasn’t played a competitive match ever since.

In the meantime, reports of his comeback in Kerala’s domestic team have been doing the rounds. However, Kerala head coach Tinu Yohanan, also a former Indian fast bowler, was clear cut in saying that ‘form and fitness’ will be playing a crucial role in his return. Yohanan also stated that the now 37-year-old has been trying hard to keep himself in good shape.

Kerala doors open for S Sreesanth

“Sreesanth has shown the keenness to play by training hard and keeping himself fit. We’ve been in touch [with him]. We will consider him, but it will depend on his form and fitness. But the door is open,” Yohanan was quoted as saying in ESPNcricinfo.

Sreesanth has been training, whole-heartedly, in the nets for quite a while. The veteran was also spotted with the Kerala U23 team after the lockdown in the country was lifted. After his ban ended, Sreesanth, in a tweet, mentioned that he still has five to seven years of cricket left ahead of him.

“I’m completely free of any charges nd anything nd now gonna represent the sport I love the most. I will give my very best to every ball I ball even (if) it’s just practice. Just have another 5 to 7 years max to give it all I’ve got nd I will give the very best to any team I play,” Sreesanth had tweeted on Friday, September 11.

Apart from Sreesanth, the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) also suspended Ajit Chandila and Ankit Chavan back in the 2013 IPL saga. The Royals also weren’t part of the 2016 and 2017 IPL after being handed a two-year suspension.

As far as Sreesanth is concerned, he was known for his immaculate seam position at the point of delivery. He’s also remembered for his aggressive celebrations and the catch he took to dismiss Misbah-ul-Haq in the 2007 T20 World Cup final against Pakistan in Johannesburg.