Irfan Pathan drops "unbelievable" reaction as Shreyas Iyer, Ishan Kishan lose BCCI central contracts

Updated - 28 Feb 2024, 09:25 PM

BCCI, Irfan Pathan, Ishan Kishan, Shreyas Iyer
Irfan Pathan, Ishan Kishan, Shreyas Iyer [PC: X/Twitter]

In a shocking step, the Board of Control for Cricket in India snubbed Indian cricketers Shreyas Iyer and Ishan Kishan from the central contract list for 2023-24. Former Indian cricketer Irfan Pathan seemed shocked by BCCI’s step as well and came up with a cryptic tweet on ‘X’ after the richest cricket board released their central contract list.

BCCI had made it mandatory for players who are not part of the Indian squad and are out of action due to unnecessary reasons to compulsorily play domestic cricket.

Irfan Pathan reacts to BCCI’s central contract list

Meanwhile, Cheteshwar Pujara, Yuzvendra Chahal, Umesh Yadav, Shikhar Dhawan, and Deepak Hooda, in addition to Ishan Kishan and Shreyas Iyer, were not awarded the central contract. Reacting after BCCI released their central contract list, Irfan Pathan wrote on ‘X’ (formerly Twitter), “Unbelievable!.”

Shreyas Iyer went through a back surgery last year and even when he came back after gaining fitness, he missed a few games due to a slight back spasm. Iyer was snubbed from the Indian squad after he failed to perform in the first two Tests of the IND vs ENG Test series. As per BCCI’s new rule, Iyer had to play for Mumbai in the Ranji Trophy knockouts.

Shreyas informed the Mumbai Cricket Association that he was suffering from a back spasm, which was disputed by Nitin Patel, the NCA’s head of sports science. Even when he made himself available for the semi-final against Tamil Nadu, this didn’t matter as the damage was already done.

On the other hand, coach Rahul Dravid recommended Ishan Kishan to play red-ball cricket, but he instead chose to prepare for the IPL. Kishan pulled out of the Test series against South Africa and was not named to India’s squad for the England series. Coach Rahul Dravid advised Kishan to play red-ball cricket before returning to Team India, but he ignored the suggestion and traveled to Baroda to practice with Hardik Pandya. The BCCI stated in its release that Ishan Kishan and Shreyas Iyer were not considered for the deal.

Despite being released from their central contracts, the players will be available to play for India. The Indian cricket team’s selection is based on performance and fitness, and it is not limited to players on the BCCI’s yearly contract list.

However, players such as Dhruv Jurel and Sarfaraz Khan who recently made their debut for India in the IND vs ENG Test series, have not been included in the central contract list.

Furthermore, players who play a minimum of three Tests, eight One-Day Internationals, or ten Twenty20 Internationals within the designated time frame will be automatically placed in Grade C on a pro-rata basis, according to the BCCI. Dhruv Jurel and Sarfaraz Khan, who have played two Tests so far, will be promoted to Grade C if they play in the Dharamsala Test against England.

Indian captain Rohit Sharma had also indicated after the fourth IND vs ENG Test match that the players who don’t have the hunger to play Test cricket will not be given the chance to represent the team.

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BCCI India India National Cricket Team Indian National Cricket Team Irfan Pathan Ishan Kishan Team India