|P. S. Narayanan (75), one of the most talented cricketers of his time and a key member of the city-based champion Jolly Rovers cricket team of the 1960s passed away on May 18.
He leaves behind his wife Lakshmi, son Sundar Raman, daughter Abhirami and their families.
Narayanan, Kannan to all in family circles, belonged to a family of cricketers.
His, and my granduncle, P. S. Ramachandran, a fast bowler who once took 10 for 18 in an innings in the Madras league, played for Madras in the very first Ranji Trophy match in history.
My brother V Sivaramakrishnan and I played Ranji Trophy and Duleep Trophy cricket, my nephew Vidyut Sivaramakrishnan played both at that level and also for Chennai Super Kings in the IPL, and a few others of the family played university and state cricket.
Narayanan himself was selected to play for Tamil Nadu but was dropped after his Ranji trophy debut, in which he did not get a chance to bat or bowl.
First at Law College and later for Jolly Rovers, he was a stylish batsman, who scored consistently for his star-studded team, especially in key matches like the finals of major tournaments.
Along with P. K. Belliappa and K. R. Rajagopal who opened the innings, and whom he followed at No. 3, he frequently gave Jolly Rovers a blazing start. He was also a very good partnership breaker with his innocuous looking off spin, which tended to engineer collapses. He was distinctly unlucky to be repeatedly overlooked by the state selectors.
Narayanan was also a fine, amateur tennis player and ran a private club for susbcribing members, first at Vivekananda College, and later in CIT Colony. His son, Sundarraman who lives now in the US, was a promising young tennis player in Chennai before he went to the US on a tennis scholarship.
Narayanan succeeded his late father P. N. Sundaresan, retired sports editor of ‘The Hindu’, as publisher of ‘Sruti’ magazine (which I edit now) and played an important role in the running of this performing arts magazine during a crucial period.
He and his extended family members grew up in the Teynampet-Alwarpet areas.
His family can be contacted at 39, Sreshta Kalyanpur, H. D. Raja Street, Eldams Road, Chennai 18. Phone: 24321765.
– Tribute written by V. Ramnarayan