Cheteshwar Pujara, Ajinkya Rahane group of things of the same kind that belong together to fail to win Grade A contracts? Reports state THIS
When one talks about the Indian Test team, one term and two names that quickly come to mind is ‘Purane’ meaning Cheteshwar Pujara and Ajinkya Rahane. The two batters in the recent past have had underwhelming performances. Talking about their recent performance against South Africa, barring a half-century each in the Test series, the duo has not done anything exceptional.
Now, it has been learnt that the Test specialists may not be placed in Group A of the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) central contracts owing to their performances.
If the national cricket board and head coach Rahul Dravid decide to honour the two batters and keep them there only then Rahane and Pujara will be placed in Group A.
According to the Print, “The central contract is a performance indicator of where you stand as per your performance during the last season. If the BCCI and head coach (Rahul) Dravid decide to honour the duo and keep them in group A, then it’s a different issue but under normal circumstances, they ideally won’t feature in group A”.
Talking about BCCI’s grade categories, the board has four categories — A+, A, B, and C — which carry annual retainership of INR 7 crore, INR 5 crore, INR 3 crore, and INR 1 crore respectively.
Including their half-century each, Rahane and Pujara managed to score 136 and 124 runs in the recently-concluded three-match Test series against the Proteas side.
After India’s series defeat, Virat Kohli had shocked all by relinquishing his Test captaincy. While limited-overs skipper Rohit Sharma is expected to be appointed as his successor, it has been reported that Pujara, and, Rahane could be dropped from the two-match home Test series against Sri Lanka next month.
Now, it remains to be seen if Hanuma Vihari or Shreyas Iyer would get more opportunities in the near future. The chances of Rohit Sharma opening the innings along with KL Rahul are high while Mayank Agarwal or Shubman Gill could bat at number three.
As far as the home series is concerned, the first Test will be played at M Chinnaswamy Stadium in Bengaluru on February 25 while the final game will be contested at the PCA Stadium in Mohali on March 5.