BCCI had asked state associations for their input on how to hold the domestic season.© AFP
With an eye on the coronavirus pandemic, the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) had asked the state associations to give their feedback – by Wednesday — on how they wish for the 2020-21 domestic season to play out. And going by the response of most of the state associations, the Syed Mushtaq Ali T20 tournament is a clear winner. In the mails accessed by ANI, almost all the state associations have called for the T20 tournament to be played. While some have also asked for the addition of the Ranji Trophy with the T20 event, others want the organisation of the 50-over Vijay Hazare Trophy as the second domestic competition for the season.
Some of the state associations have also written to the BCCI secretary and said that the season should ideally start with the T20 tournament and a decision can be taken on hosting further tournaments after taking a look at how the T20 tournament plays out. The suggestions have all been made with an eye on the protocols that need to be kept in mind with an eye on the coronavirus pandemic, including the creation of bio-secure hubs.
Explaining the reason behind state bodies backing the hosting of the T20 tournament, a state association official said: “The pandemic is a definite matter of concern since the king term effects of the disease are still not clear. You don’t want the players to be exposed to this. The parents are also concerned and a couple of parents withdrew their children from the camp that we were conducting because of the concern.
“The T20 format gives you the option of a smaller window in time and therefore is the preferred format in these circumstances if a tournament is indeed conducted.”
The feedbacks came in after secretary Jay Shah wrote to the state associations on Sunday, asking for them to give their inputs on how to conduct this year’s domestic season. The options given in the mail were: “Option 1 – Only Ranji Trophy “OR” Option 2 – Only Syed Mushtaq Ali T20 “OR” Option 3 – Both Ranji Trophy and Syed Mushtaq Ali T20 “OR” Option 4 – Both Syed Mushtaq Ali T20 and Vijay Hazare Trophy.”
In the mail, the secretary further clarified: “Preparation for the season across the men’s domestic game remains subject to ongoing advice from government and medical professionals with the safety of players, staff and officials the first priority.”
“The BCCI will have to create a total of six bio-secure hubs across the country. The 38 teams will be divided into five elite groups and one plate group. The elite groups will consist of six teams each while the plate group will have eight teams. Each of BCCI hub will have a minimum of three venues which are broadcast (digital) friendly.”
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