Monthly Archives: November 2009

BCCI’s Contracts 2009-2010

BCCI announced the new list of contracted players for 2009-2010.

Players from the previous year not included this year have been struck out in the list and players who have been offered new contracts are in bold.

Grade A (Rs 60 Lakh):
Sachin Tendulkar
MS Dhoni
Rahul Dravid
Zaheer Khan
Yuvraj Singh
Gautam Gambhir
Virender Sehwag
VVS Laxman
Harbhajan Singh

No change since last year…

Grade B (Rs 40 Lakh):
Suresh Raina
Rohit Sharma
RP Singh
Munaf Patel
Ishant Sharma
Praveen Kumar (promoted from Grade C)
Ashish Nehra (no contract last year)

In this grade, S. Badrinath and Irfan Pathan have been “demoted”.

Grade C (Rs 25 Lakh):
S. Badrinath (demonted from B)
Irfan Pathan (demoted from B)
Wasim Jaffer
Yusuf Pathan
Pragyan Ojha
Amit Mishra
S Sreesanth
Dinesh Karthik (promoted from D)

In this grade, Piyush Chawla sees a “demotion”.

Grade D (Rs 15 lakh):
Piyush Chawla (demoted from B),
Robin Uthappa
Parthiv Patel
Cheteshwar Pujara
Mohammad Kaif
Virat Kohli
Ashok Dinda
Wriddhiman Saha
M Vijay
R Ashwin
Shikhar Dhawan
Sudeep Tyagi
Manoj Tiwary
Ravindra Jadeja
Dhawal Kulkarni
Abhishek Nayar
Ajinkya Rahane

Manpreet Gony and Chetanya Nanda have lost out on a contract while Manoj Tiwary makes a reappearance after being left out in the cold for a year. Meanwhile, players to make the list for the first time are Ravindra Jadeja (about time), Dhawal Kulkarni, Abhishek Nayar and Ajinkya Rahane (3 Mumbai players!).

— Mohan

Sreesanth on Facebook



“Sangakkara, this is not Ranji Trophy”

Sri Lanka is one of the most cowardly teams playing these days. These tigers at home are generally starting to accquire the “Mice” title abroad. Somehow, Sangakkara and his men seemed to think that, while it is Ranji season in India, the same rules applied to test cricket as well. “Kumar, you do not win tests in India on first innings lead”. If a team that had the ability to reduce one of the most proclaimed batting sides in the world to 32 odd for 4 in the first innings, somehow did not have the confidence in their bowlers’ ability to do the same in the second innings. A 200 to 250 run lead would have been sufficient and daring for the Sri Lankans to take on and apply pleasure on the Indian batting line up. They chose, however, to play their default option, accumulate runs on a placid wicket. How many times have we seen this scenario in the past with this team. I am not sure I truly understand how this team has managed to climb to #2 on the ranking, as I do not remember any significant series or even test wins abroad. But if this team has to truly earn name and respect as a major test playing nation, they would have to demonstrate through bold and risky decision making on the field.

This series can and win only gain momentum of any sort if, as Mohan points out, pitches are produced with results in mind and the two captains attempt to make things happen on the field. Sri Lanka has to show and demonstrate creativity to even contemplate winning test matches on Indian soil.

– Srikanth

India v SL :: 1st Test… a Dull Draw

India and Sri Lanka played out a dull and boring draw in the 1st Test on a pitch which may not have yielded a result had the teams played on it for 10 days!

So while we have the #2 and #3 ranked teams in the world and while we have both eyeing the #1 spot, the BCCI prepared a wicket on which there was absolutely no chance of a result.

While the ICC is powerless to do anything about it, it is the BCCI has to take responsibility for this sordid preparation — it is the home team that is responsible for pitch-preparation. Then again, at a time when the ODI game and the T20 version top up coffers that are already brimming, the BCCI has little interest in making Test cricket more compelling — despite the rhetoric about the sactity of Test cricket mouthed by everyone from the President to the Secretary to the watchman! It is in BCCI’s interest to kill off Test cricket! Moreover, contracts with TV companies in India are written in such a manner as to force games to go into the last day. The TV deal has been struck on the basis of the number of days of TV coverage of Test matches and not on the basis of the number of Test matches! So, it is in BCCI’s interest to prolong Test matches to the last ball of the last day of all Test matches. And, in order to be fail-safe, why would they not let all matches go beyond the last ball of the last day of Test matches? I would, if I was given such a contract and was asked by my boss to maximise revenues with such a “dud deal”!

That is, if I were also short-sighted.

Unfortunately, short-sightedness seems to be a pre-requisite for a BCCI post!

Dileep Premachandran writes about the high percentage of draws in the flat pitchers of India, when compared to result-oriented pitches presented in countries like Australia, South Africa and Sri Lanka. They are focussed on becoming the best team in the world. The BCCI is focussed on being the richest in the world. Misplaced priorities.

Meanwhile, neither team can draw much from the match — apart from the draw that is!

After the first session of the Test, no bowler really had a good outing in this game! It was nice to see Zaheer Khan back in action. He seemed to bowl with fire and accuracy. Ishant Sharma is bowling well but needs a pitch that does something. Harbhajan Singh tried his hardest and Amit Mishra just landed it. The one worry might be Amit Mishra’s lack of penetration. If the Kanpur pitch has a tinge of grass on it, I will not be surprised to see Sree Santh ahead of Amit Mishra. Despite the wobbly start, the Indian batsmen were excellent. It was nice to see Rahul Dravid, Yuvraj Singh, M. S. Dhoni, Viernder Sehwag, Gautam Gambhir, Sachin Tendulkar and V. V. S. Laxman get amongst the runs for India.

Sri Lanka had a terrific outing too. But neither team emerged better than the other.

This was just a terribly boring game. Hope there is more on offer in Kanpur. However, that would depend completely on the BCCI!

— Mohan