Updated February 29th, 2024 at 13:37 IST

'Yuzvendra Chahal, Shreyas, Umesh...': List of Players who are out of BCCI central contract list

The out-of-favour duo of Ishan Kishan and Shreyas Iyer were excluded after ignoring the directive to play Ranji Trophy, while skipper Rohit Sharma and star batter Virat Kohli expectedly retained their place in the top bracket as the BCCI unveiled its centrally-contracted players for this year.

Rohit Sharma and Yuzvendra Chahal | Image:BCCI
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The out-of-favour duo of Ishan Kishan and Shreyas Iyer were excluded after ignoring the directive to play Ranji Trophy, while skipper Rohit Sharma and star batter Virat Kohli expectedly retained their place in the top bracket as the BCCI unveiled its centrally-contracted players for this year on Wednesday.

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 since leaving from the tour of South Africa in December citing personal reasons. He has instead focussed on preparing for the IPL next month.

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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 the Ranji semifinals starting March 2.

While announcing the central contracts for 2023-24, the BCCI once again advised all India cricketers to play domestic games when not on national duty.

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"Please note that Shreyas Iyer and Ishan Kishan were not considered for the annual contracts in this round of recommendations," said the BCCI in a statement.

"The BCCI has recommended that all athletes give precedence to participating in domestic cricket during periods when they are not representing the national team," the board added.

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Their exclusion can be seen as a stern message to young players unwilling to put in the hard yards in first-class cricket, while chasing white-ball glory and lucrative IPL contracts.

Rohit, Kohli, pace spearhead Jasprit Bumrah and all-rounder Ravindra Jadeja were retained in the A plus category, the highest bracket of the BCCI's central contracts list.

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Six cricketers feature in the A category including senior off-spinner R Ashwin, who will be playing his 100th Test next week, when India takes on England in the fifth and final game. Ashwin recently became only second Indian bowler after formr captain Anil Kumble to take cross 500 wickets in Tests.

Mohammed Shami, Mohammed Siraj, KL Rahul, Shubman Gill and Hardik Pandya are the others to feature in the A category.

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Siraj, who was in the B category previously, has been promoted while Axar Patel has moved down from A to B.

Others in the B category are Suryakumar Yadav, Kuldeep Yadav, Rishabh Pant and Yashasvi Jaiswal, who has had a stellar start to his international career.

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Pant was in the A category last year but finds himself in B in the latest contracts having not played any cricket since his horrific accident in December 2022.

As many as 15 were handed C category contracts including Rinku Singh, Tilak Verma, Ruturaj Gaekwad, Shardul Thakur, Shivam Dube, Ravi Bishnoi, Jitesh Sharma, Washington Sundar, Mukesh Kumar, Sanju Samson, Arshdeep Singh, KS Bharat, Prasidh Krishna, Avesh Khan and Rajat Patidar.

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Cricketers who end up playing a minimum of three Tests or eight ODIs or 10 T20Is within the specified period are automatically included in Grade C on a pro-rata basis.

For instance, Dhruv Jurel and Sarfaraz Khan, having played two Test matches so far, will be inducted in Grade C after they take part in the fifth and final game against England in Dharamsala beginning March 7.

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Pujara, Chahal, Dhawan dropped 

The big names who have lost their contracts include Cheteshwar Pujara, Shikhar Dhawan, Umesh Yadav and Yuzvendra Chahal, who all have fallen out of favour with the selectors.

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It signals the end of the road for the likes of Pujara but the 33-year-old Chahal can still make a case for himself if he plays more games.

The selection committee has also recommended fast bowling contracts for Akash Deep, Vijaykumar Vyshak, Umran Malik, Yash Dayal and Vidwath Kaverappa. This system has been place since 2021-22 but it is for the first time that the BCCI has officially released names of the selected players.

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Akash Deep had impressed on debut in the recent fourth Test against England, which India won to seal the series.

In a departure from the norms, the BCCI this time has not mentioned the remuneration of the players across the four categories.

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Cricketers are normally paid Rs 7 crore per annum in A plus bracket, Rs 5 crore in A, Rs 3 crore in B and Rs one crore in C category, over and above their match fees.

Central contracts for 2023-24: Grade A+: Rohit Sharma, Virat Kohli, Jasprit Bumrah and Ravindra Jadeja.

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Grade A: R Ashwin, Mohd. Shami, Mohd. Siraj, KL Rahul, Shubman Gill and Hardik Pandya.

Grade B: Surya Kumar Yadav, Rishabh Pant, Kuldeep Yadav, Axar Patel and Yashasvi Jaiswal.

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Grade C: Rinku Singh, Tilak Verma, Ruturaj Gaekwad, Shardul Thakur, Shivam Dube, Ravi Bishnoi, Jitesh Sharma, Washington Sundar, Mukesh Kumar, Sanju Samson, Arshdeep Singh, KS Bharat, Prasidh Krishna, Avesh Khan and Rajat Patidar.

Fast bowling contracts: Akash Deep, Vijaykumar Vyshak, Umran Malik, Yash Dayal and Vidwath Kaverappa. PTI BS PM PM

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Published February 28th, 2024 at 20:09 IST