First leg of Ranji Trophy from February 10, knockout matches from May 30

Ranji Trophy

New Delhi| The first leg of the much-awaited Ranji Trophy will be played from February 10 to March 15, after which the country’s top domestic cricket competition will be given a break during the Indian Premier League. The next leg of the tournament will take place from May 30 to June 26. Cricket Board of India (BCCI) Secretary Jay Shah gave this information to the state units on Thursday.

It is clear from Shah’s letter that this will be one of the shortest first-class seasons with most teams playing only three matches.

This means that a team that is eliminated from the group league stage will not get much benefit from the increased match fee as most of the teams will be eliminated from the group stage. As reported earlier by PTI, eight elite groups of four teams each will be formed while the remaining six teams will get a place in the plate division. According to the new slab of match fee, those playing more than 40 matches will be paid Rs 60,000 per day, which is much higher than the previous match fee of Rs 35,000 per day. Apart from this, players having experience of 21 to 40 matches will be paid Rs 50,000 per day.

During the tournament, 64 matches will be played in 62 days. There will be 57 matches in the first phase. The second phase will have seven knockout matches with four quarter-finals, two semi-finals and a final.

The Elite Group matches will be played in Rajkot, Cuttack, Chennai, Ahmedabad, Trivandrum, Delhi, Haryana and Guwahati. Plate League matches will be held in Kolkata.

Nine biologically safe environments will be required at nine venues during the tournament. Last year the tournament was canceled for the first time in the history of Ranji Trophy and this year also due to the third wave of Kovid-19, the BCCI was forced to postpone the tournament. The tournament was to begin on January 13 as per the pre-scheduled schedule. The last domestic cricket match with the red ball was played in India in March 2020.

Shah wrote in a letter to the state units, “I am happy to share with you that we are fully prepared to restore both international and domestic cricket.” Waited patiently for the pandemic to loosen its grip and the time has come for our cricketers to become the center of attraction once again.

He wrote, “The revised Ranji Trophy format is now ready. To reduce the risk of spread, we have decided to organize the Ranji Trophy at nine different venues in the country while also ensuring that there is no overemphasis on biologically safe environment in the past. Kovid has knocked in the atmosphere and this includes IPL. Shah, however, said that the board has prepared a contingency plan.

Shah wrote, “While creating this framework, the virus is also penetrating into a biologically safe environment, we have also prepared a contingency plan based on our past experience.” The Elite Group has two stadiums at each venue. The match will be held while three stadiums will be used in the Plate Group in Kolkata.

Delhi has been placed in the Elite H group along with Tamil Nadu, Jharkhand and Chhattisgarh, whose matches will be held in Guwahati. Defending champion Saurashtra team will play their group match in Ahmedabad. The team is placed in the Elite D group along with Mumbai, Odisha and Goa.

(image source-BCCI)

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