North-East states and Bihar included in domestic cricket schedule
What’s the story?
Indian domestic cricket is all set to witness a subtle change in its upcoming season. Barring the 2017-18 Ranji Trophy, the Board of Cricket Control in India (BCCI) has decided to include Bihar and the North-East states in the other domestic fixtures.
In a recent interaction with Hindustan Times, Nabha Bhattacharya, the convenor of the North-East Cricket Development Committee, expressed his happiness on their inclusion. “We thank the CoA for making our participation possible in BCCI tournaments. All these years we have just been promised but for the first time it has been made possible and it is only because of the CoA. Whatever they promised to us, they have delivered upon it,”- he said.
The convenor also put emphasis on how the move will help them analyse their cricket in a more detailed manner. “This will help us gauge our strengths and weaknesses as we will not play as a combined team. The game will also get a boost in the region as youngsters will see a future for themselves. Earlier, there was no hope of playing top level cricket. It is upon us (NorthEast states) to perform well and stake a claim for Ranji Trophy representation the next season.”- he added.
In case you didn’t know…
The North-Eastern states and Bihar were previously excluded from the domestic schedules, which rightfully was an issue for the boards of the states. However, their grievances have eventually been addressed by the Committee of Administrators (CoA).
The heart of the matter
Bihar and North-East states will also field their sides in the Under-16, Under-19 and Under-23 tournaments. Apart from these events, the decision also applies for women’s tournaments. In the last season, a combined North-East states team participated in domestic tournaments.
However, Mizoram missed out as they weren’t affiliated with the BCCI.
Meanwhile, the CoA hasn’t ruled out their chances participation in the Ranji Trophy either. They stated that it depends upon when the BCCI adopts the one-state vote policy in its new constitution.
The Ranji fixtures start from October with its traditional home and away fixtures, and provide a great platform for players to get into the national side.
There have been several changes which have been discussed regarding this season’s domestic fixtures. Previously, the Ranji matches were shifted to home and away fixtures after several complaints from the captains.
This time around, with the inclusion of Bihar and North-East states, an exciting Indian domestic season seems to be in the offing. Also, it’s heartening to see cricket in the North-East getting prominence in the domestic circuit.