India Star, Likely To be Axed From BCCI Contract For Not Playing Domestic Cricket, To Feature In Ranji Trophy

The absence of top stars from domestic cricket has been a hot topic of discussion in recent times. The BCCI secretary Jay Shah recently made it clear that BCCI’s centrally contracted players, who are not part of the national team, will need to play red-ball cricket in domestic circuit. “All contracted players have been told on phone and I’ll be writing to them too. If chairman of selectors, coach & captain want you to play red-ball cricket then you gotta play. Nakhre Nahi Chalenge (no tantrums). And as far as Ishan Kishan is concerned, he is young, I am not saying this specifically about him as it will be applicable for all the players uniformly,” Jay Shah told reporters.

Ishan Kishan, after taking a break midway from India’s Tour of South Africa, hasn’t featured in domestic cricket. Another cricketer Shreyas Iyer, made himself unavailable for Mumbai’s Ranji Trophy quarterfinals citing injury concerns but the National Cricket Academy (NCA) has said that he has no ‘fresh injuries’, according to a report by Indian Express.

In the midst of this came a report by Times of India, saying both players might be axed from BCCI’s central contract list. “Kishan and Iyer are likely to be excluded from that list, as both haven’t been playing domestic cricket despite the BCCI’s diktat to do so,” a source told the paper.

Now, middle-order batter Shreyas Iyer was on Tuesday named in Mumbai’s 16-member squad for the Ranji Trophy semifinal against Tamil Nadu starting on March 2. Mumbai qualified for the semifinals after their quarterfinal clash against Baroda ended in a draw at the BKC Ground, with the 41-time champions making it to the final four on the basis of first-innings lead.

Lacking big runs and struggling with a back-related issue again, the 29-year-old Iyer was not named in India’s squad for the last three Tests against England.

Iyer, subsequently, also missed Mumbai’s quarterfinal match along with all-rounder Shivam Dube.

The timing of Iyer pulling out of the key Ranji clash coincided with BCCI secretary Jay Shah announcing that a directive will be issued to players to compulsorily play domestic matches.

While Dube is on the mend having suffered a side strain issue, Iyer has recovered completely and will be available for the semifinal against Tamil Nadu.

Mumbai squad: Ajinkya Rahane, Shreyas Iyer, Prithvi Shaw, Bhupen Lalwani, Amogh Bhatkal, Musheer Khan, Prasad Pawar, Hardik Tamore, Shardul Thakur, Shams Mulani, Tanush Kotian, Aditya Dhumal, Tushar Deshpande, Mohit Avasthi, Royston Dias, Dhawal Kulkarni.

With PTI inputs

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