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Build-up to Indian Domestic Season 2009-10

Arjun

Cricketer Of The Year
This will become the in-game thread once the series starts. We already have some news in, with the declaration of the schedule. Going by this article, we won't like the look of it.
Indian news

BCCI scraps Deodhar Trophy

Cricinfo staff
July 1, 2009


A crammed domestic schedule has prompted the BCCI to cancel the Deodhar Trophy tournament for the 2009-10 season. The decision was taken by the Tour Programmes and Fixtures Committee of the Indian board, which met in Mumbai to formulate the domestic schedule and finalise venues for the India-Australia ODI series due to be played in October this year.

"Deodhar has been dropped because of the tight schedule (for domestic cricket)", a BCCI source was quoted as saying by PTI.

The Deodhar Trophy is India's premier domestic limited-overs tournament, named after Professor DB Deodhar. A 50-over tournament, like the Duleep Trophy, which the BCCI has decided to retain for the upcoming season, it is played between the five zonal teams. The inaugural Deodhar Trophy took place in 1973-74, with an intention to groom Indian cricketers for the then relatively new limited-overs game.

West Zone were the winners last season, beating East Zone by a mammoth 218 runs in the final to take the title.
This is utter stupidity. Why would you scrap your premier OD tournament? To accommodate the IPL? Seriously, this is your supply line to the ODI team, and you cut it off? At a time when your ODI team isn't doing too well? They can, instead, junk the inter-state T20 championship (the only edition, back in 2007, was hardly eventful) and keep the Deodhar Trophy.

There's also some talk about the Corporate Trophy, which will be a limited-overs tournament. Fans and TOI readers would remember such an idea floated by Dalmiya, which never took off. That was in the pre-T20 age. I wonder what it will be like, but we'd prefer they stick to the existing Ranji/ROD system and instead, run it like the IPL or corporate tournament, not organise more tournaments that have no value.

In other news, Abhishek Jhunjhunwala, the Bengal player who shifted to ICL, has come back into the mainstream, and even made the Rajasthan Royals squad.
 

G.I.Joe

International Coach
Yeah, I think the Duleep's going to be a knockout tournament. That's not a bright idea IMO. No more overseas teams in the Duleep too. That I can live with.

Ideal scenario would be to convert the Duleep Trophy into the country's premier first class competition with an all-play-all home and away league format. Ranji could be a Champions Trophy type thing to be played among the top 8 elite teams in the country, with promotion and relegation from the Plate division.

The List A competitions could follow a similar format to the Duleep and Ranji, but with just one meeting between teams instead of home and away games.

These could be played over the traditional season, with the IPL as the sole T20 competition in April.
 
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Arjun

Cricketer Of The Year
Yeah, I think the Duleep's going to be a knockout tournament. That's not a bright idea IMO. No more overseas teams in the Duleep too. That I can live with.

Ideal scenario would be to convert the Duleep Trophy into the country's premier first class competition with an all-play-all home and away league format. Ranji could be a Champions Trophy type thing to be played among the top 8 elite teams in the country, with promotion and relegation from the Plate division.

The List A competitions could follow a similar format to the Duleep and Ranji, but with just one meeting between teams instead of home and away games.

These could be played over the traditional season, with the IPL as the sole T20 competition in April.
We've suggested that for a long time. Keep the Duleep Trophy at a time when there's no international action for a long time, so that all the top Indian players - Test, ODI and T20- are available. Likewise the Deodhar Trophy.

The Elite/Plate system in place can stay, though the idea of having foreign recruits should also be explored, consisting mostly of IPL picks from the franchises in whose catchments these teams are placed. They can restrict the foreign players exclusively to the Elite league, with eight options at hand and only two playing a match. That will be convenient for both the teams and the internationals. The Plate team will only have local players, and there can be some unpredictability, such as having three Plate teams promoted as they have won more matches than some Elite teams. That will then cut out the possibility of Elite teams playing for draws and first-innings lead points, and encouraging the highly competitive Plate teams. Performance in the Ranji Trophy should be evaluated in selecting the Duleep teams, and consequently the national team.

The List-A Hazare Trophy should follow the Ranji model of Elite and Plate, with the same modifications, or else have the knockouts decided on an all-India points table, not just the zonal toppers. We've had enough of also-rans from East and Central making the knockouts. Performance in ROD should be a factor in selection of Deodhar teams and finally the national team.

They should isolate the IPL and schedule it at a harmless, stress-free and clash-free date.
 

chris.hinton

International Regular
There is too many Indian Teams (26) there should be an 8 team Premier League and the rest are non first class...

There should be only a one day competition between the same 8 and scrapped Zonal teams and bulid around the IPL
 

honestbharani

Whatever it takes!!!
I'd be willing to wholeheatedly agree with the above.
I have made that suggestion for a long time now.. Have Duleep and Deodhar trophies between the IPL franchises.. abolish the zones and make Duleep, Deodhar and IPL T20 as the premier tournaments. Have a Ranji league with elite and plate divisions for 4 day, 1 day and T20 competitions with promotion/relegation and the works.. as a feeder for the IPL which will now be played in all 3 formats of the game...
 

Arjun

Cricketer Of The Year
On Cricinfo's India page, you now find the list of forthcoming matches in India, starting with the Irani, Challenger and Ranji matches. Things have improved greatly since ESPN joined Cricinfo.

I don't believe the Ranji Trophy be stripped of FC status, but the Duleep/Deodhar Trophy should be used to build teams. As for there being too many teams, you need so many initially to cover all of India, not just the big six (Mumbai, Tamil Nadu, Karnataka, Delhi, Baroda, Punjab) of Indian cricket. Let's not forget, we've got several new players from lesser teams such as Kerala, Andhra Pradesh, Uttar Pradesh, Jharkhand, Haryana, Railways and not-so-powerful Gujarat, Saurashtra and Hyderabad. It should be a two-stage process.

Going back to that idea of IPL franchise involvement in domestic cricket, I'd turn that idea around and have the IPL owners managing the various Ranji teams in the catchment areas, through special purpose ventures, and getting in foreign players (two per XI, but eight options at hand) at Elite level and world-class facilities for all teams. They all need to be packaged and marketed a lot better, likewise the zones, though zonal teams should be maintained by BCCI and possibly Nimbus. Now that the ICL is almost finished, Zee and TEN can join the BCCI and Nimbus in creating a broad telecast network.

The Challenger Trophy can stay, but should be reverted (with a tweak) to the original format of the Indian top team facing the reserve (Board XI) and development (India A) teams. This should be used, as I have said before, only as a workout, and not as a selection springboard.
 

Arjun

Cricketer Of The Year
Your Irani teams to take the field? Let's just hope we see full-strength teams face each other.

Rest of India
  • Sehwag
  • Gambhir
  • Dravid
  • Laxman
  • Yuvraj
  • Yusuf Pathan (OB)
  • Dhoni (C, WK)
  • Irfan Pathan (LFM)
  • Praveen Kumar (RMF)
  • Harbhajan (OB)
  • Ishant (RF)
  • RESERVES: Karthik (WK), Mishra (LBG), Pujara, Badrinath
The bench looks strong, so in case a replacement is needed, it's no big deal.

Mumbai
  • Jaffer (C)
  • Rahane
  • Tendulkar
  • Rohit Sharma
  • Mazumdar
  • Nayar (RM)
  • Powar (OB)
  • Samant (WK)
  • Agarkar (RMF)
  • Zaheer (LFM)
  • Kulkarni (RM)
  • RESERVES: Kukreja, Rahil Sheikh (LFM), Abdulla (SLA)
This team picks itself. Easily.
 

Furball

Evil Scotsman
The Indian domestic scene seems ridiculously complicated to an outsider.

The Ranji and Duleep trophies are both First Class, aren't they?
 

Arjun

Cricketer Of The Year
They're both first-class, officially. Ranji is for the state teams while Duleep is for zonal teams. Likewise Hazare and Deodhar for List-A.
 

Arjun

Cricketer Of The Year
Now, the BCCI Technical Committee have suggested these changes or improvements for the domestic scene. They don't want any foreign players in the league, and want to keep the drifters/nomads/shipjumpers down to three a team. That's very tight, and may I say, regressive. If anything, these teams need some foreign players to fill in for the missing Indian national team players, as we won't be seeing them for too long in the Ranji Trophy. The good thing that they have suggested is that the contracted players turn up for their state teams when not playing for India, but they need to keep the quality consistent when they are on national duty.

They have also expressed concern about the quality of the SG balls used in the domestic matches. When the ball loses shape and has to be changed five times in a session, there is a problem. I wonder why it took so long to report.
 

andruid

International Captain
There was talk on the grape vine of BCCI working with Cricket Kenya to either get players of a representative XI playing ina non-specified Indian domestic competition. It was about 2 months ago and have not heard anything about it since then.

What's the word?
 

Furball

Evil Scotsman
They're both first-class, officially. Ranji is for the state teams while Duleep is for zonal teams. Likewise Hazare and Deodhar for List-A.
So is Duleep a step up from Ranji then?

Also, if the Ranji trophy is a state trophy, how many teams are there?
 

Arjun

Cricketer Of The Year
So is Duleep a step up from Ranji then?
More or less a step up. One is a competition among states, the other, among zones, with each zone comprised of five (or six) states. Ideally, a zonal selection has the best among the states within the zone.
Also, if the Ranji trophy is a state trophy, how many teams are there?
There are 27 teams, of which 25 are state teams, with the other two being Railways and Services. Relatively new states are not represented.
 

Arjun

Cricketer Of The Year
Roger Binny has been appointed as coach of Bengal for one year. IT's a good development, though it had to do with his predecessor's stressful relationship with the CAB. Binny worked with the U-19 team that won the WorlD Cup, so it's not a bad choice. His biggest challenge will be maintaining a top fitness level for the team, as Bengal don't have too many players who are very athletic or physically fit- they seem to be a very old-school team.

There will be a meeting on the Corporate Trophy a little later this month. What will it be like? If it's another T20, then it won't work at all. The best we expect is an IPL-style tournament for 50-over cricket, but there is a catch. This is a corporate tournament, so there may be excessive attempts at brand promotion rather than developing cricket.
 
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Arjun

Cricketer Of The Year
Two coaching updates- Manoj Prabhakar has been appointed coach of Rajasthan. Not the prolific IPL team, but the pushover Ranji/Hazare State team without all those foreign/guest players. The IPL Rajasthan team's victory didn't carry on to this team, as they could not win a single match and were relegated to Plate league.

In bigger news, Wasim Akram was approached to coach Delhi. He was chosen over Jonty Rhodes because of his all-round ability, while Jonty was more of a specialist, though the choice was more about pay package. The downside, if any, is that he won't be available as a full-time coach.
 

Arjun

Cricketer Of The Year
In other news, Bhupinder Singh was appointed coach of Punjab. That's not big news, but looking at Punjab (Ranji) vs Punjab (IPL), there is a big difference. The franchise owners bought out enough reserve Indian players to make it look like India A, but Punjab's only representation, apart from Yuvraj, was in VRV Singh and occasionally Gagandeep. Punjab players elsewhere were Harbhajan for Mumbai and Gony for Chennai, and Harbhajan did a lot better. Not surprisingly, their team didn't do too well last season. The ICL impact was also quite big, but that's been long ago, and they're slowly getting back to top shape.

Karnataka may have its own T20 league, the Karnataka Premier League (KPL). Anil Kumble is not pleased, for a good reason- there's not much to gain from what is essentially a whole lot of Karnataka clubs playing in the league. The proliferation of T20 low down isn't a good idea, as it will result in bad habits developing in young players at a very early age.

There is still a little buzz about the Corporate Trophy. Twelve teams have been finalised, and it's a week-long event. More here. Parthiv Patel, it seems, has been told by employers Reliance to play for them here. The condition is that each team should have four FC players and all players on the company payrolls.
 

Arjun

Cricketer Of The Year
An article on the Corporate Trophy on Cricinfo. Interesting, that Air India can field two teams when they're not doing too well in the terminals. Maybe they're in it for the money, and are trying very hard for it.

In other news, Sreesanth is headed for Warwickshire, and may play seven games. This will help him a lot, although we are not sure if they're willing to give him a game.
 

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