Heavyweight Mumbai, Delhi, and Karnataka have been put together in the same group for the upcoming season of the Ranji Trophy. India’s premier domestic-level season will begin on January 5 next year, with the trio battling it out in the ‘group of death’.
Joining the big three will be Hyderabad, Uttarakhand, and Maharashtra which rounds out Elite group C. The defending champions Saurashtra have an easier path into the knockout stages, having been paired with Tamil Nadu, Jammu and Kashmir, Jharkhand, Railways, and Goa in Elite group D.
Last year’s runners-up Bengal also have a relatively easier route as compared to the other favourites. Bengal was defeated by Saurashtra on the basis of a first-innings lead back in the 2019/20 season. They are now grouped with Rajasthan, Kerala, Haryana, Vidarbha, and Tripura in Elite group B.
There are as many as five Elite groups and one Plate group which will consist of eight teams. These eight are Bihar, Meghalaya, Chandigarh, Nagaland, Mizoram, Sikkim, Manipur, and Arunachal Pradesh.
Kolkata to host the final of the Ranji Trophy season
The matches have been assigned to five major cities in the country. These include Mumbai (Elite A), Bangalore (Elite B), Bangalore (Elite C), Ahmedabad (Elite D), Trivandrum (Elite E), and Chennai (Plate). The teams will undergo a mandatory quarantine period of five days ahead of every game.
The 2019-20 season final was held at Rajkot while this time around, Kolkata has been assigned to stage the final on March 16. It will also be the venue for all the knockout matches, a move that might have been forced due to the covid-19 pandemic times we live in.