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Sarfaraz Khan, Dhruv Jurel get central contracts; Ranji matches unlikely to be held in North in Dec-Jan

India’s newest batting star Sarfaraz Khan and wicket-keeper Dhruv Jurel were inducted into Group C of BCCI’s central contract with an annual retainership fee of Rs 1 crore, having fulfilled the criteria of playing three Tests in a current season.

Their names were ratified during BCCI Apex Council meeting which was held on Monday.

Sarfaraz, a domestic heavyweight for Mumbai, scored three half-centuries in three Tests against England while Agra man Jurel, with scores of 90 and 39 not out in a tricky chase at Ranchi, won the Player of the Match in only his second game.

Ratification of central contract was on the agenda and both have made the cut.

Ranji Trophy scheduling

The BCCI is likely to revisit the Ranji Trophy calendar for the next season and will not schedule any matches in the northern part of India during December and January when fog and bad light often play spoilsport.

While the detailed domestic calendar will be announced later, the BCCI Apex Council did discuss the tentative schedule of 2024-25, which was one of the primary items in the eight-point agenda of the Apex Council meeting on the day.

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For the past few seasons, the Ranji Trophy has started in January and ended in the second week of March and in north-Indian cities like Delhi, Chandigarh, Kanpur, Meerut, Jammu, and Dharamsala, most matches are being affected by bad light and fog during peak winter months.

“No decision has been taken yet but the Ranji Trophy, like earlier years could start from mid or end of October after the Syed Mushtaq Ali Trophy, which serves as an IPL auction platform. Some states are losing crucial points in do-or-die games because of inclement weather from mid-December to mid-February,” a senior BCCI source told PTI.

It has been also learnt that BCCI will form a committee, which will decide whether union territory Daman & Diu get associate membership.

Foreign boards can’t talk to state bodies directly for exposure trips

A lot of ICC associate member nations like Nepal want to come for exposure trips to India and play practice games against some of the state sides. The Nepal team, which will play the T20 World Cup in the USA and the West Indies, are supposed to train in the national capital and also plan to play a few T20 matches against Gujarat, and Baroda in a three-team tournament called Friendship Cup.

However, BCCI’s Apex Council made it clear that any affiliated state unit will need NOC from the parent body before they can host any international team.

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