CHENNAI: Cricket has changed and so has the cricket calendar, where the old is making way for new. Busy with the Tamil Nadu Premier League (TNPL), the Tamil Nadu Cricket Association (TNCA) has decided against staging the Buchi Babu Trophy this year. Unless there is an unforeseen change in plans, it
is unlikely to return in the near future.
The tournament named after M Buchi Babu, the Father of South Indian Cricket, was held for decades until last year. Played in July-August, it served as a preparatory event for Ranji Trophy. State sides treated it seriously because it was among the handful of events they could play before the season when it rains in most parts of the country.
But with the TNPL occupying a crucial part of its calendar for four years, organisers TNCA has decided it’s not practical to hold both.
“The BCCI season starts soon after TNPL. There’s no time for Buchi Babu. We have to wait and see if it’s held in the coming years. It can happen only if the TNPL starts early or the BCCI season starts late,” said a TNCA official.
Buchi Babu was held in the first two years of TNPL, in 2016 and 2017. In 2018, the TNCA was given the responsibility of staging Duleep Trophy and a part of the Vijay Hazare Trophy. So it cancelled Buchi Babu. This year, the absence of additional fixtures has made no difference.