Mogappair, Ambattur, Pattabiram and Red Hillsare no longer the cricketing hinterland. Theseare among areas in Tiruvallur district that have produced top-class players in recent times,writes R. NARAYANAN

What began as a trickle has turned into a stream… The contribution of Tiruvallur district, which includes Mogappair, Ambattur, Pattabiram and Red Hills, towards Chennai cricket has got bigger and better.

What exactly has driven the game forward in these areas? Direction. The ‘outbacks’ have always had the talent, but the riches have been frittered away due to lack of guidance. With more former players working with the boys now, the results have begun to show.    

The Baba twins - Aparajith and Indrajith - are shining examples of this phenomenon. They were just four when they took guard at the Fine Star Cricket Academy (now Annai Violet CA), one of the very few academies existing at that time. The two went on to make a name for themselves and commanded a place in the prestigious city league too. In fact, Aparajith plays for Chennai Super Kings in this year’s IPL while another Tiruvallur player, X. Thalaivan Sargunam, represents Sunrisers Hyderabad.

A.H. Srikanth, who coached the Baba brothers, reveals that the district boys have been outshining their city counterparts in recent times. “With good coaching facilities and better infrastructure, our boys are progressing faster than those in the city,” he says. 

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