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BCCI okays revision of Ranji format

Calcutta/New Delhi: The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI)’s working committee approved the special committee’s recommendations for overhauling domestic cricket.

As a result, the format of the Ranji Trophy has been revised. Twenty-seven teams will be divided into three groups of nine sides each. The top three teams from Groups A and B, and the top two from Group C, will qualify for the knockout stage.

The technical committee headed by Sourav Ganguly, and the special committee comprising of another former captain Anil Kumble, among others, had recommended some sweeping changes in the domestic cricket structure on June 12.

Also, the inter-state tournament for the under-22s will henceforth be referred to as the ‘A’ teams’ tournament, and will feature cricketers in the under-25 age-group.

It was decided that the India A team will tour New Zealand in September-October 2012.

The Board also allowed Chhattisgarh to participate in the under-16 inter-state tournament (Plate Group).

Besides, the NKP Salve Challenger Trophy will feature the winners of the Vijay Hazare Trophy, and two teams which would be picked by the senior selection committee.

Meanwhile, the BCCI granted amnesty to former India wicket-keeper Kiran More, making him eligible for the one-time benefit payment.

More, who had joined rebel Indian Cricket League (ICL), back in 2007 along with former India captain Kapil Dev and several others, was banned by the BCCI.

[According an Agency report, the Board is likely to grant amnesty to Kapil as well. The report says that president Narayanswamy Srinivasan has taken a personal initiative in bringing the 1983 World Cup-winning captain back in the BCCI fold.]

“More’s amnesty application has been accepted,” senior BCCI official Rajiv Shukla told reporters .

Prior to the fifth edition of the IPL, More had written to the BCCI seeking amnesty, having rejected the same offer in 2009. He was a chief selector before joining now defunct ICL. As far as the benefit scheme goes, More who has played 49 Tests and 94 ODIs will be eligible for a payment of Rs 60 lakh.

Along with it, his pension will also be restored and all arrears are likely to be cleared.

In a separate development, Srinivasan and India coach Duncan Fletcher are likely to meet on Tuesday to discuss the twin Test series debacles in England and Australia.