On May 9, Indian cricketer Suresh Raina and former all-rounder Irfan Pathan both interacted on Instagram Live where the two discussed the importance of global T20 tournaments for out-of-favour players. Since the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) does not allow active Indian players to participate in non-BCCI approved leagues, both cricketers opined that at least non-contracted Indian players should play overseas. After Raina and Pathan, seasoned campaigner Robin Uthappa became the latest prominent member from the Indian cricketing fraternity to demand participation in foreign leagues from the BCCI.
While speaking to BBC, Robin Uthappa admitted that it 'hurts' when players are not allowed to play in foreign T20 leagues by the BCCI. He said that it would be nice to play in overseas competitions as it will help cricketers to gain experience by playing in away conditions. Robin Uthappa also pinned hopes on current BCCI President Sourav Ganguly to grant access to Indian players for overseas participation.
The Indian batsman referred to Sourav Ganguly as someone who is a “progressive” thinking person and has always believed in taking Indian cricket to the next level. Robin Uthappa credited the former captain for leading Indian cricket to where it is now. He also hoped that Sourav Ganguly will look into the current BCCI regulations at some point.
Veteran Indian all-rounder Yuvraj Singh represented Mumbai Indians in the 2019 season of the Indian Premier League (IPL). While he last represented the Indian team in 2017, Yuvraj Singh announced his retirement from all forms of cricket after his successful IPL 2019 stint with the Rohit Sharma-led franchise. His retirement made him eligible to participate in foreign leagues. As a result, Yuvraj Singh took field for the Maratha Arabians in November in the 2019 Abu Dhabi T10 League.
During the IPL 2020 auction, Robin Uthappa was acquired by the Rajasthan Royals franchise for ₹3 crore (US$395,830). Previously, the cricketer represented the Kolkata Knight Riders between 2014 and 2019. In the now-postponed IPL 2020 season, the right-handed batsman will play alongside the likes of Steve Smith, David Miller, Ben Stokes, Sanju Samson, Jos Buttler among others.