Cricket
No more hiding for Ishan Kishan, BCCI issues diktat to play Ranji Trophy

No more hiding for Ishan Kishan, BCCI issues diktat to play Ranji Trophy

BCCI has sent an email to all centrally contracted players directing them to play Ranji Trophy 2024 after Ishan Kishan opted out.

The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) has had enough players’ tantrums. The Indian board has issued a diktat to players currently taking “breaks” to play the Ranji Trophy last round starting Feb 16. They have taken the break from domestic games without the advice of the National Cricket Academy (NCA). The diktat directly affects players such as Ishan Kishan who has escaped the mandate of playing Ranji matches for Jharkhand.

BCCI is unhappy with players for focusing solely on IPL preparations. As per a Cricbuzz report, the BCCI emailed all centrally contracted players to join their state teams. They have to be available for selection unless injured. Those who are undergoing rehabilitation are exempted from the directive. Shreyas Iyer who was dropped from the India Cricket Team will also have to report to the Mumbai and play Ranji Trophy.

“Players cannot simply prioritize international cricket or the IPL. They must make themselves available for domestic cricket and honour their commitments to their respective state teams,” a BCCI official told Cricbuzz.

After leaving the India Cricket Team during IND vs SA series, Ishan Kishan has been on a break. He is currently training for IPL 2024 at the Kiran More academy. However, Ajit Agarkar-led BCCI selection committee as well as India coach Rahul Dravid have asked Kishan to play some cricket.

But so far, Kishan has defied all the advice. Now, Ishan will have to join Jharkhand squad and be available for the last league match of Ranji Trophy 2024.

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What about white-ball specialists?

BCCI’s directive is not exclusive to all format players alone. It also applies to players who have considered themselves white-ball specialists for some time but did not call it a time on their red-ball careers. The likes of Krunal Pandya, Hardik Pandya, Deepak Chahar, Shikhar Dhawan and Yuzvendra Chahal all have to report to their state teams.

However, Hardik Pandya may get an exemption as he is yet to receive the green signal from the NCA. Hardik has been out of action since the World Cup after suffering an ankle injury.

There is also a curious case of Shikhar Dhawan. Even though the veteran batter has been an active centrally contracted player, he last played a First-class match back in 2019. Since then, he has considered himself as a white-ball specialist. But with the selectors moving on from Dhawan to youngsters, he only plays in IPL.

What about Virat Kohli?

The diktat does not affect Virat Kohli. Even though the former India captain has not played domestic cricket for a long time, he is on a break for personal reasons. Kohli has received permission from the BCCI. That’s the reason he is not part of India squad for IND vs ENG Tests at the moment.

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