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Students pad up for T20 tournament

- Sights set on BCCI trophy, PU to organise inter-college cricket contest

The BCCI decision to resume inter-university tournaments in T20 format has come as a much-needed boost to revive the cricket culture in Patna University.

The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) has decided to organise tournaments in T20 format on the lines of Rohinton Baria Trophy to promote cricket among students at the varsity level.

The inter-university tournament is a joint initiative by the ministry of human resource development (MHRD) and Association of Indian Universities. The BCCI working committee has approved the tournament.

Eyeing the big event, Patna University (PU) has organised an inter-college T20 tournament, starting February 20. All the matches would be played on Patna College grounds.

PU sports secretary Suheli said: “The four-day inter-college tournament will start on February 20. All colleges under the PU would participate in the series.”

Patna College, Patna Science College, BN College, Vanijya Mahavidyalaya, Patna Law College, Patna Training College, College of Arts and Crafts and a team from the postgraduate departments of the PU have already confirmed their participation.

Satyaveer Singh, a member of the Patna College cricket team, said: “For a university like PU, which hardly organises sports events, the inter-college T20 tournament is a huge opportunity for players to showcase their skills.”

He added that because of the negligence of the university very few students could make their careers in sports. “However, things are changing,” Singh said. The Patna College has constituted a 15-member cricket team.

PU sports secretary Suheli also informed that based on the performance of players at the inter-college tournament, a selection trial would be conducted to build a team at the university level. This team would represent the varsity at the inter-university cricket tournament. The inter-university series would be played zone-wise. The PU has to compete with universities of the eastern zone of the state.

Former Ranji player Amikar Dayal said: “It is very encouraging that the BCCI has decided to revive inter-university cricket tournaments on the lines of Rohinton Baria Trophy. The coveted trophy helped find players like Sunil Gavaskar and Dilip Vengsarkar.”

Dayal added that the Rohinton Baria tournament was extremely popular among cricket enthusiasts. “The tournament produced many good players, who later played the nationals.”

However, the former Ranji player said just participating at inter-university cricket tournaments would not help students unless the varsities “seriously work towards promoting cricket”.

“The universities should create sports infrastructure at the college level, appoint coaches and most importantly maintain the grounds,” said Dayal.