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BCCI terminates Ishan Kishan, Shreyas Iyer’s central contracts with immediate effect; Rinku Singh, Tilak Varma included

Ishan Kishan and Shreyas Iyer are not part of BCCI’s annual retainership for 2023-24.

The BCCI on Wednesday announced the list of central contracts for 2023-24, with captain Rohit Sharma, Virat Kohli, Jasprit Bumrah and Ravindra Jadeja being put in the Grade A+ category. Notably, Ishan Kishan and Shreyas Iyer were not on the central contracts list. The duo had reportedly been defying directives to take part in the Ranji Trophy, and the board has seemingly cracked the whip on the star players.

India’s Ishan Kishan is not part of the BCCI annual retainership list for 2023-24(AFP)

“Please note that Shreyas Iyer and Ishan Kishan were not considered for the annual contracts in this round of recommendations,” a statement from BCCI read over the duo’s absence from the central contracts.

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Rinku Singh and Tilak Varma, however, were among the many new faces included in the central contracts list. The duo was added to the Grade C category, which includes 15 players; Ruturaj Gaikwad and Shivam Dube, who made strong comebacks to the Indian T20I team, are a part of this category, too. Additionally, Jitesh Sharma, who replaced Ishan Kishan in the Indian T20I team, is also included in the ‘C’ list.

Rishabh Pant, who has been away from action since his horrific car crash in December 2022, was put on Grade B, which also includes Suryakumar Yadav, Kuldeep Yadav, Axar Patel, and Yashasvi Jaiswal. Pant is likely to make a return in the Indian Premier League this year; Suryakumar, meanwhile, remains one of India’s most promising batters in the shortest format.

Kuldeep Yadav and Axar Patel, meanwhile, have represented the side in multiple formats over the past months, with the former producing crucial performances in the ongoing Test series against England.

Jaiswal was rewarded for his consistent performances in the T20Is and Test; he played a key role in India’s Test series win against England, and remains the highest run-scorer in the five-match series with a game remaining in Dharamsala.

Veteran off-spinner Ravichandran Ashwin was in the Grade A category alongside star pacers Mohammed Shami and Mohammed Siraj, as well as batters KL Rahul and Shubman Gill. Hardik Pandya, the star all-rounder who led the Indian T20I squad throughout 2023, secured his spot in the Grade A central contracts.

New additions likely

Players meeting specific criteria, such as playing a minimum number of matches (3 Tests or 8 ODIs or 10 T20Is) within the designated period (October 1 2023 to September 30, 2024), were automatically included in Grade C contracts on a pro-rata basis.

The BCCI, in its statement, added that Dhruv Jurel and Sarfaraz Khan – having participated in two Test matches, could move into Grade C if they feature in the upcoming Dharamsala Test against England.

In addition to the annual contracts, the Selection Committee also recommended fast Bowling contracts for certain players, acknowledging their specialized skills and potential contributions in the bowling department.

The recipients of these contracts included Akash Deep, Vijaykumar Vyshak, Umran Malik, Yash Dayal, and Vidwath Kaverappa.

Full list of Central Contracts for 2023/24

Grade A+ (4 Athletes)

Rohit Sharma, Virat Kohli, Jasprit Bumrah and Ravindra Jadeja.

Grade A (6 Athletes)

R Ashwin, Mohd. Shami, Mohd. Siraj, KL Rahul, Shubman Gill and Hardik Pandya.

Grade B (5 Athletes)

Surya Kumar Yadav, Rishabh Pant, Kuldeep Yadav, Axar Patel and Yashasvi Jaiswal.

Grade C (15 Athletes)

Rinku Singh, Tilak Verma, Ruturaj Gaekwad, Shardul Thakur, Shivam Dube, Ravi Bishnoi, Jitesh Sharma, Washington Sundar, Mukesh Kumar, Sanju Samson, Arshdeep Singh, KS Bharat, Prasidh Krishna, Avesh Khan and Rajat Patidar.


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