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Updated March 1st, 2024 at 18:33 IST

'It was high time. NOBODY is BIGGER...': Kapil Dev's TOUGH stance on Ishan-Shreyas' issue with BCCI

Ishan Kishan and Shreyas Iyer were excluded from the BCCI's central contracts. Legendary former India captain Kapil Dev expressed his opinion on the matter

Kapil Dev comments on Shreyas Iyer and Ishan Kishan
Kapil Dev comments on Shreyas Iyer and Ishan Kishan | Image:PTI/BCCI
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BCCI recently announced the central contract list on Wednesday for the upcoming season. Surprisingly, Ishan Kishan and Shreyas Iyer were excluded from the BCCI's central contracts after ignoring the board's order to play in the Ranji Trophy when not playing for Team India. The decision was met with mixed reactions with some former players like Kirti Azad and Irfan Pathan backing the out-of-favour duo while others calling BCCI's move is absolutely correct. 

Legendary former India captain Kapil Dev also expressed his opinion on the matter and backed the BCCI's decision to terminate central contracts for lack of commitment to domestic cricket. Kapil Dev called it a much-needed step to protect marquee first-class events like the Ranji Trophy, saying "A few players will suffer, but let it be."

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Kapil Dev on Ishan Kishan and Shreyas Iyer's issue with BCCI

While, Kapil refrained from taking names but said the BCCI's decision to assert the importance of domestic cricket was long overdue.

"Yes, few players will suffer, kuch logon ko taqleef hogi, hone do lekin desh se badhkar koi nahi hai (some people will feel hurt but let it be because nobody is bigger than the country). Well done," he said.

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"I congratulate the BCCI for taking the much needed step to protect the status of domestic cricket. I was sad to see domestic cricket being given the skip by players once they had established themselves in international cricket," the captain of the 1983 World Cup-winning side observed in his statement.

The BCCI, while announcing the central contracts, urged the players to give due importance to domestic competitions.

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The 25-year-old Kishan did not turn up for Jharkhand throughout the team's campaign in Ranji Trophy despite not being on national duty after leaving the tour of South Africa in December citing personal reasons. He instead focussed on preparing for the IPL next month for his franchise Mumbai Indians.

Iyer, on the other hand, did not make himself available for Mumbai's Ranji quarterfinal against Baroda after being excluded from the Indian team after the second Test against England. He, however, has been picked for Mumbai's Ranji semifinal against Tamil Nadu starting March 2.

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"It was high time the message was given and this strong step by the BCCI will go a long way in restoring the prestige of domestic cricket," he added.

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Kapil asserted that it was the duty of established stars to play domestic cricket as they owe their success to their respective states.

"I have always believed in the process of international players making themselves available to play for their respective states. It helps them extend their support to domestic players. Also it is a nice way to pay back for the services rendered by the state association in grooming a player," he said.

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(with PTI inputs)

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Published March 1st, 2024 at 16:52 IST

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