Thiruvananthapuram: A delegation of leading Indian businessmen led by owners of the Kerala Kings team from the UAE met with Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan on Tuesday at his office with a proposal to set up the world’s first T10 Cricket Academy in the state capital.
The delegation, led by Dr Shafi Ul Mulk, Chairman of Mulk Healthcare and co-owner of Kerala Kings team that won the first-ever international T10 tournament held in Sharjah, also discussed with the Chief Minister a road map to conduct T10 cricket league matches across the state to spot cricketing talent and enroll them into the proposed UAE Cricket Academy.
The UAE delegation, which included the chairman of World Malayalee Council Issac John, presented the Chief Minister with a replica of the Champion’s Trophy won by Kerala Kings. The Chief Minister congratulated Kerala Kings and the T10 committee on their success and assured support for their initiatives. World Malayalee Council (WMC), the most networked Malayalees diaspora forum, is supporting the initiative by Kerala Kings’ owners.
The first Indian launch of T10, the new sensation in cricket, was held at the third edition of Indywood Film Carnival at Ramoji Film City, Hyderabad. NRI entrepreneur Sohan Roy who spearheads the $10 billion Project Indywood is also the Chairman and CEO of UAE-based Aries Group. Indywood has plans to telecast 90-minute T10 matches in all cinemas. According to Dr Mulk, a key objective of the T10 committee is to facilitate world-class training to budding cricketing talents under renowned coaches.
“These initiatives are aimed at enabling talented youth of the state to gain confidence and international exposure through playing with cricketing stars, and eventually make them part of Kerala Kings and other T10 franchise teams,” he said.
Hussein Adam Ali, co-owner of Kerala Kings, added that players would be offered attractive remuneration and perks for the second edition of the T10 tournament running for 10 days. “This will help them enjoy financial security in their career,” he added.
Kerala Kings, as part of its CSR initiatives, would also look to provide cricketers from Kerala and from across India permanent jobs with residency status to make them qualify to represent the UAE at international tournaments.”
Members of the delegation that met the Chief Minister included Anil Nair, Director of Iris Insurance, G. Prasad, Director of RGI Group. Issac John, Global Chairman of the WMC and veteran journalist, and Johny Kuruvilla, WMC Advisory Council Chairman.