Kerala Veterans Cricket Association welcomes you

Kerala, the God's own country is considered by many as the birth place of the game of Cricket in India. Cricket has always been a game with a distinct English connection and it was Col.Sir Arthur Wellesley, who brought the game to Tellicherry, the small but historical town in Northern Kerala in 1800s. Later, the game in its true tradition was kept alive by the famous cricket families like the Mampallys, Nakkads and the Acharaths in north while the royal families of Tripunithura and Travancore patronized the game the central and southern parts of the state.

The veteran cricket movement started in the mid 80s, bringing together the senior cricketers to play an occasional game or two, amongst themselves or against visiting clubs. Later, Kerala Veterans Cricket Association (KVCA), added momentum to this movement by bringing together yesteryear cricketers and others of the cricketing fraternity in the state on a single platform. For us, Cricket has always been a way of life, a reason to enjoy the spirit of bonhomie and nostalgia.

Our teams have been regularly making goodwill tours overseas, to Europe, the Far-east and the Middle East countries. We have also played host to visiting clubs like the I Zingaries, Romanys and the Lankan Cavaliers. Kerala team also participates in the inter-state veteran's championship conducted by the Board for Veteran Cricket in India. Wherever we go, new friendships are made, old friendships renewed, tales of mighty feats recounted.

Veteran's Premier League: First In India (Fixture and Scorecards)

Kerala Veteran's Cricket Association (KVCA), a fraternity of former state cricketers, is organising a Veteran's Premier League a first in India. This is being held in Kochi from 8 February to 9 February 2014.

Six teams from across the state would participate in a Twenty20 format. The tournament will be played in colour clothing and white ball at the Palace Oval and Rajagiri College Grounds There would be live telecast of the matches.

S Sunil Kumar, former player and Secretary of KVCA said, This is for the first time that such a tournament is being organised in India. In fact this thought came about when we realised that most of the ex-stars of Kerala cricket were still active in club cricket and we wanted to give them an opportunity to showcase their skills at an appropriate occasion. This would also bring together all the former players once a year.

The teams were first selected through a bidding process and then a selection process was held to select the team members. This Kerala Veteran's Premier League has been fashioned along the lines of the Indian Premier League and is expected to grow in the years to come.

V Narayanan Kutty , former player and Vice President, KVCA observed that, Even before the KVCA Executive Committee announced that we were going for a bidding process, we had people coming forward to own teams. Since it was the first time, we restricted this to six teams.

The six teams

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All owners are active members of the KVCA.

The teams are made up of former players who have represented the state or played in Kerala at any level with KVCA membership. The players were grouped into four categories based on their representations and age. The selection of teams was based on a pre-defined composition to ensure representation across all categories. The main squad (dug-out team) would have 16 players, coach and owner. Team composition would include State Players - above 50 years, State Players - above 45 years, State Players - above 35 years and Club Players. Each team owner also had to choose an Icon player before the selection of team players.

A formal inauguration of the tournament would be held on February 7 at Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium, Kaloor. After the inauguration a match is being planned between a combined team from the Veteran's fraternity and CCL, where some of the big film stars are expected to play.

Muthoot Kochi Tuskers Win Inaugural VPL more

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D Gopakumar