Moody will be Sunrisers’ coach and Srikkanth the mentor

The Sun Group, new entry into the high-profile Indian Premier League, unveiled its team name — Sunrisers — and its logo, in the presence of former India captain Krishnamachari Srikkanth, who will be the mentor and strategic analyst, and coach Tom Moody and CEO Shanmugam at a colourful function on Thursday.

New challenge

Speaking on the occasion, Srikkanth said it would be a new challenge for him and for the entire team as it enters the IPL fray. “I have a very good friend — Tom Moody — as the coach and V.V.S. Laxman as the brand ambassador-cum-mentor. We will come up with the right kind of strategies as we all know what it takes to make a winning combination,” the former India opener said.

“I am a big believer in the Sun God and the new identity encapsulates the valour, chivalry, endurance, independence and fearlessness of the eagle synthesising with the energy and radiance obtained from the sun,” remarked Srikkanth.

“I am confident that this team will fly like an eagle and make a big impact in the next edition of the IPL,” Srikkanth said.

“The objective of the team management is to win the Cup and, having been the chairman of the Indian selection committee which picked the winning team for the 2011 World Cup, I am aware of the expectations and the challenges ahead. Similarly, Moody himself being a member of the 1987 World Cup-winning Australian team and Laxman, a son of the soil with vast experience, should be able to cobble up the right combination to stun the best of rivals,” he said.

On the subject of creating a ‘home fans’ base in Hyderabad for Sunrisers, Srikkanth said the Sun network had a very wide following in the entire south, including Hyderabad.

Different views

The Sunrisers mentor differed with former India left-arm spinner Bishan Singh Bedi’s view that IPL was killing cricket. “I look at the IPL as a wonderful opportunity for the young talent to showcase their skills as contemporary cricket has a following for all three formats — Tests, one-dayers and T20s.”

Tom Moody said he was relishing the challenge of guiding the destiny of the new franchise. “I am looking forward to the exciting prospect. I have a very good friend in Srikkanth as mentor and also Laxman to support me,” he said.

Shanmugam said the Sunrisers would operate from Chennai and Hyderabad and that the franchisee had not yet decided on the exact number of players and whom to go for in next month’s auction.

Laxman could not make it to the function because of a close family member’s demise.

The Sunrisers has retained the following players from the Deccan Chargers squad: Kumar Sangakkara (capt), Cameron White, Dale Steyn, J.P. Duminy, Juan Theron, Chris Lynn, Ishant Sharma, Abhishek Jhunjhunwala, Akash Bhandari, Amit Mishra, Anand Rajan, Ankit Sharma, Bharat Chipli, Shikhar Dhawan, D.B. Ravi Teja, Parthiv Patel, Veer Pratap Singh, Biplab Samantray, Akshath Reddy and Ashish Reddy.

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