T Natarajan
T Natarajan

India’s newest pace bowler T Natarajan has been released from the Tamil Nadu squad for the Vijay Hazare Trophy ODI competition as the BCCI wants him to stay fresh for the limited-overs series against England next month, a top TNCA official said on Thursday.

Natarajan relieved from Vijay Hazare Trophy squad

India are set to play five T20Is and three ODIs against England from March 12, in Ahmedabad and Pune respectively.

“That is what we have heard (T Natarajan should be released). We have not got a request in writing, but we understand that the team management wants him to get ready by practicing at the National Cricket Academy (NCA) in Bangalore.

T Natarajan
T Natarajan 

“The secretary is looking into it. The Tamil Nadu Cricket Association (TNCA) will take the right decision,” Kasi Viswanathan of the TNCA was quoted as saying to Cricbuzz.

“The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) and the team management want him fresh. It is in the national interest. And so we are ready to oblige. We had named a replacement should he be not available, and that issue has been sorted out. We have released Natarajan,” S Ramasamy, the TNCA secretary, said.

Natarajan was earlier included in a 20-man Tamil Nadu squad for the tournament beginning February 20. Tamil Nadu had recently won the Syed Mushtaq Ali Trophy in Ahmedabad.

Natarajan Debut in Australia tour

Last month, Natarajan became the first Indian bowler to make his debut in all three formats on the same tour. He played the last ODI at the Manuka Oval in Canberra after which he was India’s star performer in the T20I series.

The fact that Jasprit Bumrah missed the last Test at The Gabba in Brisbane made sure that Natarajan makes his Test debut as well. Earlier, Natarajan talked about how emotional he became when Indian skipper Virat Kohli handed him the T20 trophy.

“When Kohli handed over the trophy to me after the T20 series win, I had tears in my eyes,” Natarajan had said. After he returned from the tour of Australia, the fast bowler got a grand reception in his hometown.