The world of Gurunath Meiyappan, principally an enthusiast

  • Firoz Mirza, Hindustan Times
  • Updated: Jul 14, 2015 21:24 IST
Former Chennai Super Kings (CSK) team official Gurunath Meiyappan and Rajasthan Royals co-owner Raj Kundra have been suspended for life from any cricketing activity. (HT photo)

Gurunath Meiyappan, former Chennai Super Kings (CSK) team principal, was on Tuesday suspended for life by the Lodha panel from participating in any type of cricket-related activity.

Till 2013 Meiyappan was the face of Chennai franchise but found himself in a spot of bother after Mumbai police summoned him for questioning in connection with his alleged involvement in illegal cricket betting.

The 40-year-old Meiyappan is the son of AVM Balasubramanian who is the brother of AVM Saravanan. They are part of the AVM family which owns one of the oldest, and biggest TV and film production houses in South India.

Meiyappan is the the managing director of AVM Productions and Entertainment, which was founded by his grandfather AV Meiyappan.

Known as "prince Gurunath" in Chennai, he is active on the city's golfing circuit - which is where he met N Srinivasan's daughter Rupa, who is also an avid golfer.

Golf and motor racing are the sports that Gurunath has played at a competitive level. Media reports also suggest he has won the Palani Hills Open amateur golf tournament multiple times and has competed in Formula Asia.

His marriage to Srinivasan's daughter was the coming together of two of the richest families in Chennai and also brought him into cricket.

After the inception of IPL in 2008, Meiyappan was the owners' representative in the Super Kings' dugout for almost six seasons. Referred to as boss or team principal by some of the CSK players, he also lifted the paddle at the IPL auctions and talked about the team, its strategies and his involvement with them.

However, the IPL match and spot-fixing scandal changed the script dramatically, as Meiyappan, who was seen as good luck charm by many, suddenly found himself under unwanted spotlight. CSK was the first to wash its hands of him, with Srinivasan claiming he was a mere enthusiast and not team principal.

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