“Hope Money Is Not Incentive To Play Test Cricket”: Rahul Dravid’s Blunt Take On BCCI’s New Scheme

The BCCI on Saturday took an unprecedented step of awarding cash incentives to players who feature in Test cricket. This scheme is not only designed to encourage players to engage in the purest format of the sport but also addresses the evolving dynamics of the cricketing landscape, ensuring parity with match fees in other formats and league cricket. Commencing from the 2022-23 season, the ‘Test Cricket Incentive Scheme’ will serve as an additional reward structure on top of the existing match fee for Test matches, set at INR 15 lakhs.

Indian cricket team head coach Rahul Dravid welcomed the move from BCCI and termed it as a reward for playing the toughest format.

“Hope money is not going to be the incentive to play Test cricket. It is nice to see that it is a recognition that it is a hard format. Nice that BCCI is recognising that. I hope it is not seen as an incentive to play Test cricket. Hopefully, it does not come down to that. It’s a recognition that it is a hard format. It is a reward not an incentive,” Dravid said at the end of the 4-1 Test triumph over England in Dharamsala.

Commenting on the development, BCCI President, Mr Roger Binny, said: “We are thrilled to introduce the ‘Test Cricket Incentive Scheme,’ reaffirming our dedication to the well-being and encouragement of our senior men cricketers. This initiative aligns with our vision of promoting Test cricket as the pinnacle of the sport.”

BCCI Secretary, Mr Jay Shah, said: “The ‘Test Cricket Incentive Scheme’ is a progressive move to acknowledge the significance of Test cricket. This pioneering initiative is intricately aligned with our broader vision, which is focussed around the promotion of Test cricket as the undisputed pinnacle of the sport. As we embark on this journey, we are not only recognizing the invaluable contributions of our players but also fostering an environment that values and prioritizes the essence of the traditional format of the game. This scheme is designed to inspire our cricketers to contribute their absolute best to the longer format of the game. It is a recognition of the unique challenges and demands that Test cricket poses, and through this initiative, we seek to not only reward excellence but also cultivate a renewed passion for the purest form of the sport.”

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