The Board of Control for Cricket in India has decided to start the 2018-19 domestic cricket season with the Vijay Hazare Trophy and include an extra round of matches in the Ranji Trophy.
Meanwhile, earlier, Ranji Trophy used to embark the start of the domestic season.
During the meeting in Kolkata, there was an elaborate discussion on the introduction of Kookaburra balls. However, BCCI will continue using the SG balls as was done previously.
However, the Ranji Trophy will see a new round in the form of Round of 16 (pre-quarter-finals) matches in Ranji Trophy.
An extra round in Ranji Trophy
A technical committee member admitted that most of the state captains were in favour of adding another round. Also now, there will be four groups with two teams going for the knockouts.
“After the Captain-Coaches’ Conclave in Mumbai, most of the state team skippers wanted a pre-quarterfinal. Now we have four groups with two teams qualifying for the quarterfinal.
“Captains feel that knockouts should start from the pre-quarters itself, so technical committee wants to include a round of 16. It would mean eight extra matches and also one extra match for 16 teams,” the member said.
Vijay Hazare to start the domestic season:
With monsoon continuing in the eastern states till October, Vijay Hazare will start the domestic season. Beginning Ranji Trophy in October affects a lot of four-day matches which don’t give any result.
“The calendar could be tweaked. It will now start with Hazare Trophy followed by Ranji Trophy group league stage. We will then have the Syed Mushtaq Ali Trophy (National T20) as it would help all the IPL teams to scout for talented players. Once that gets over, the knockout stages of the Ranji Trophy will commence with the pre-quarterfinals.”“Technical committee chairman Sourav Ganguly wants that we now prepare such a calendar that at least we don’t need to tweak it for some time. There should be consistency,” he added.
More limited-over matches for women:
On the part of women’s cricket, BCCI is of the view to introduce more limited-over games to create a pool of cricketers.
“Since the Indian women’s team is playing ODIs and T20s at the national level, these are the two formats that we should concentrate. There is no point in playing the longer format as the women’s team is not playing Test matches anymore.
“It will only help if we can prepare a good pool of white ball players,” the official concluded.
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