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TN duo at the helm of Caribbean franchise

Caribbean Premier League team St. Kitts and Nevis Patriots appoints Malolan Rangarajan as its new head coach; TA Adhishwar continues as director.

TN duo at the helm of Caribbean franchise

CHENNAI: St. Kitts and Nevis Patriots (SKNP) director of cricket TA Adhishwar said that he would work in tandem with newly-appointed head coach Malolan Rangarajan to bring consistency into the Caribbean Premier League (CPL) franchise’s set-up.

While Patriots emerged triumphant in the inaugural edition of the 6IXTY (60-ball tournament) last year, it failed to make the cut for the CPL 2022 play-offs. “We (him and Malolan) have done research and put a lot of effort into what we want to build. I will be working with Malolan to create the best environment for the players. Malo and I will be handling the team dynamics. We are here to create a legacy for St. Kitts,” Tamil Nadu’s Adhishwar, who joined SKNP ahead of the 2022 season, told DT Next.

“With our experience, we have come up with a brand of cricket that we want St. Kitts to play. We have picked players who can play the brand of cricket that we believe in. That is the direction we have chosen for Patriots,” added Adhishwar, also a strategic consultant for Indian Premier League (IPL) side Delhi Capitals (DC).

“There is pressure to succeed everywhere in franchise cricket. There is added pressure to perform far better than what we did last year. We will do everything we can to bring success to the franchise not just this year but for years to come as well.”

Adhishwar emphasised that his long-lasting friendship with Malolan would make each other’s job easier. “Malo and I go back a long way. We were school mates. I have known Malo for about 20 years. Our friendship only became stronger after we both got involved with the roles we have chosen for ourselves. We can easily gauge what one another is thinking, what one another wants to do. We are very like-minded,” Adhishwar said.

What does a director of cricket do?

When asked about the key responsibilities of a director of cricket, Adhishwar replied: “I handle everything pretty much related to cricket operations – identifying the support staff, managing the staff, identifying talent, signing players and giving them role clarity.”


Ever since venturing into top-level coaching in 2019, Tamil Nadu’s Malolan Rangarajan has been making good progress.

After retiring from professional cricket at the age of just 30, Malolan joined Indian Premier League (IPL) franchise Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) as talent scout-cum-fielding coach. The former Tamil Nadu spinner has been associated with the men’s team since 2019, playing his part in guiding the side to three successive play-offs (IPL 2020, 2021 and 2022).

He served as assistant head coach for the RCB team in the inaugural Women’s Premier League (WPL) that was hosted earlier this year. Malolan on Wednesday added another feather in his cap by becoming the first Indian first-class cricketer to be named a franchise’s head coach in an overseas T20 league.

Caribbean Premier League (CPL) team St. Kitts and Nevis Patriots (SKNP) handed over the top role to Malolan after ex-chief coach Simon Helmot vacated the seat. The 34-year-old has been a part of the Patriots family since 2020, having worked as an assistant coach for three seasons (he could only remotely help the team in his first year as the CPL clashed with Bangalore’s pre-IPL camp in August 2020).

Malolan was one of the brains behind SKNP’s rise in the last two seasons – the franchise clinched its maiden CPL title in 2021 and the 6IXTY (60-ball tournament) crown the following year. Having tasted success in recent times and earned promotion, Malolan is positive about living up to the billing in CPL 2023, which will be held in August-September.

“I was an assistant coach at St. Kitts for three years. I have been an assistant (fielding) coach for the Royal Challengers men’s team for the last four years. I was the assistant head coach of the RCB women’s team. So, I have been exposed to a lot of environments. The fact that I have played cricket… I have seen a lot of coaches over the years. That will help me,” Malolan, currently on IPL 2023 duty, told DT Next in a telephonic interaction.

“It is all about preparation. How do I make the team environment stable? How do I make it enjoyable? How am I going to facilitate the needs of the players? I am a very confident person and I also like the team’s structure,” added Malolan.

“I have to thank both RCB and St. Kitts. They took a punt on me. They have given me all opportunities to grow. The type of person I am, I do not like letting go of opportunities. I like to make the most of them. I am to be blamed if I do not make the most of them.”

Tasked with taking Patriots to another high, Malolan said that it would require some effort to match his predecessor’s work. “I must convey my thanks to Simon. I was his assistant for a few years. I learnt a lot. He set a standard for St. Kitts; we together won two different trophies. It is important to know what the standards are. The way people have started looking at St. Kitts has changed. We are no longer looked at as underdog.”

Malolan stressed that his prime objective would be to create a “culture” where the players get to express themselves on the field. “For me, what is going to be important is how the players feel within the group. I would like to be known as someone who brought in an extraordinary culture, a stable and secure culture. The players can then play as freely as they want. Giving security to players is important,” he explained.

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Shrivathsan S
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