bcci to match players red ball fees with ipl contracts reports sportstiger

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After announcing the annual central contracts for Indian players, the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) are reportedly contemplating matching the red-ball fees with IPL contracts. They are currently in discussions with the Indian head coach Rahul Dravid, captain Rohit Sharma, and the chief selector Ajit Agarkar about reviving the interest among players for red-ball cricket.

As per the Times of India (TOI) sources, the BCCI have a proposal to raise the match fees/remuneration of players, who are playing Tests and domestic red-ball cricket to ensure that it matches with the lower mid-level IPL contracts. Notably, there was no mention of the value of the different grades of the annual central contracts for Indian players, which is why the ongoing discussions between BCCI and the team management are a step in the right direction.

In the past few years of the Ranji Trophy, the premier red-ball domestic tournament in India, the quality of cricket has dropped substantially because the players manage themselves with an eye on the IPL later in the season. The interest in domestic cricket also takes a nosedive especially after the IPL auctions are completed in the middle of the season.

A BCCI source told TOI, “The board has asked for recommendations from the Indian team management. They are taking a very aggressive approach towards maintaining the sanctity of the longest format of the game. It is imperative that players, who are committed to first-class cricket, are rewarded at a similar level as IPL cricket. That would mean that existing remuneration has to be multiplied.”

“The recommendations are on the lines of increasing the Test match and first-class fees by three times. The idea is that if a player plays the entire Ranji Trophy, he should be able to make around Rs 75 lakhs which matches an average IPL contract. It has also been suggested that if a player plays all Test matches in a year, he should be able to make Rs 15 crores which is at par for any marquee IPL contract,” the source added.

As per the existing match fees, a player who participates in all 10 matches in a Ranji Trophy season, can make around ₹25 lakh. Meanwhile, the BCCI annual central contracts, including four grades, were valued at ₹7 crore, ₹5 crore, ₹3 crore, and ₹1 crore last time around.

Although the BCCI is looking forward to allowing a considerable raise in remuneration for the Tests and red-ball players, it won’t be threefold immediately. The BCCI source said, “The board may not agree to increasing the remuneration by three times at one go but they are considering meeting the players at mid-point. Even that should be a hefty raise. This is why the board has not announced the value of contracts. The board will have to decide if it wants to raise the match fees or make specified contracts accordingly.”