BCCI leaves out Bihar and North East from Ranji Trophy calendar

BCCI leaves out Bihar and North East from Ranji Trophy calendar

This season, the Ranji trophy will be played in 4 groups instead of 3.

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A view of logo of the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI). (Photo by Aniruddha Chowhdury/Mint via Getty Images)

In what can be termed as a setback, Bihar and North-eastern states once again faced a snub from the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI). Both Bihar and NE were not included in the Ranji Trophy calendar which was released by the BCCI to the state associations on Thursday. This was one of the pointers in Lodha Committee reforms, it says that NE and Bihar are to be included in matters pertaining to cricket (tournaments).

This time around, the Ranji Trophy matches will be played in four groups instead of three. The first round of matches will commence from October 6, while the final will be played on December 29. Since North east states have not been granted Full Member status, there was a possibility of introducing a combined North east team, with the likes of Arunachal Pradesh, Meghalaya, Mizoram, Sikkim and Nagaland in this Ranji season.

Disappointing move

Nabha Bhattacharya, who is the convenor of the Northeast Cricket Development committee, was disappointed with the BCCI for not considering them in the Ranji Trophy. “This is gross discrimination to states from the Northeast. We were promised to have a combined team in the Ranji Trophy in the last season and also this time. But this time too we have not been considered. We will now meet again and we may consider to appeal in the Supreme Court,” Bhattacharya told Hindustan Times.

The BCCI was also requested to consider an additional tournament for the U23 category by the Mumbai Cricket Association joint secretary Dr Unmesh Khanvilkar. “This will be a huge boost to the U-23 boys as they hardly got any exposure with just one multi-day tournament in a season. It is really nice of the BACK to consider our request,” Khanvilkar said. It will be interesting to see if NE and Bihar gets a look in.

It will be interesting to see if NE and Bihar are included in the coming time, making the tournaments more competitive and reaching out to more audience.