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Balaji included in IPL Chennai team

cricket Updated: Mar 18, 2008 18:07 IST

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Out of the national side for the past three years, pacer Lakshmipathy Balaji has been included as an additional bowler in the Indian Premier League's (IPL) Chennai Super Kings team.

Announcing Balaji's inclusion, V B Chandrasekar, a former selector and head of cricketing matters in the Chennai Super Kings, said, "We have pitchforked him in our team as an additional bowler. He has been in action after recovery from injury in the TNCA's first division matches this season."

"Balaji has been effective in two spells of 10 overs, though he has not been tried on the trot. He is surely going to be a lethal weapon in our scheme of things in the Twenty 20 IPL matches," he said.

He said the whole composition of the team has to be decided this evening and the squad list would be sent to BCCI's IPL Committee first.

"This is mandatory. We cannot officialy release the list to the media now.You will have two or three more surprises in our composition. We also have plans to launch the team by month end," he said.

Balaji was sidelined after a stress fracture and had last played for India in 2005, during the Indian Oil Cup in Sri Lanka.

He returned to action in the Irani Trophy match and Challenger Trophy matches for India Red at Chennai in 2006.

Balaji, with his open-chested action and a wide off the crease line, made his test debut against New Zealand at Ahmedabad in October 2003.

The Chennai-based pacer received accolades for his all round display from none other than Pakistan President, Pervez Musharraf during India's 2004 tour of Pakistan.

He bagged 12 wickets in three Tests on that tour.

He has claimed 27 and 34 wickets in eight tests (Av.37.18) and 29 ODIs (Ave.38.58) respectively.