"It is an open message to all" - Manoj Tiwary backs BCCI's 'central contract snub' decision

Updated - 29 Feb 2024, 05:50 PM

Manoj Tiwary, Ishan Kishan, Shreyas Iyer
PC: X/Twitter

While the BCCI’s decision to not give Shreyas Iyer and Ishan Kishan a central contract for not playing in Ranji Trophy games has met with criticism from several quarters, former India batsman Manoj Tiwary has supported the call.

The BCCI announced the list of centrally contracted players on Wednesday (February 28). The board also announced that neither Kishan nor Iyer was even considered for the contracts while also telling the players to prioritize domestic cricket.

“The BCCI has recommended that all athletes give precedence to participating in domestic cricket during periods when they are not representing the national team,” stated the BCCI.

Kishan and Iyer faced a snub for not playing in the Ranji Trophy after being dropped from the team. While Kishan took a break from the game before the Test series in South Africa, he was not considered for the T20I series against Afghanistan and the ongoing series against England. India head coach Rahul Dravid said that the batsman will have to play domestic games to be eligible for selection again.

On the other hand, Iyer was asked to play in the Ranji Trophy after being dropped from the Test squad for the final three games of the ongoing series against England. The right-handed batsman, however, decided against playing the Ranji game citing a back injury. However, the BCCI’s medical team told the selectors that the batsman was fully fit.

Manoj Tiwary supports BCCI’s call:

Manoj Tiwary said that while removing Iyer and Kishan from the central contract list could have been avoided, the BCCI’s decision has sent a much-needed message to the players. He said that sending the message was important in order to save the competition. He also stated that he would be writing a letter to the BCCI to make the board aware of the issues plaguing India’s domestic arena.

“See, removing players from central contracts could have been avoided, though I don’t know what conversation they had in between. But now it is an open message to all that if players are available, they have to play domestic cricket, and that is how you have to protect this tournament. That is what I also said in my tweet,” Manoj Tiwary told Sports Now.

“Now everyone should fall in place, not one or two individuals. The rule has to be equal for all. Many other things need to be looked at, and in time, I’ll write a letter to BCCI to highlight those areas,,” he added.

Speaking further, Manoj Tiwary, who recently retired from first-class cricket, said that the players only talk about the IPL even during domestic games. He stated that the players start focusing on the IPL once they receive the lucrative contracts. The former Bengal captain also said that the players do not give their hundred percent on the field in order to save themselves for the IPL.

“I have seen youngsters and established players speak only about IPL during domestic matches. Even in the zonal matches, when I used to play, their discussions are entirely based on IPL, and that I have seen from close quarters. The conversations, topics and issues mostly surrounded IPL only,” said Manoj Tiwary.

“It is pretty natural once IPL contracts are given before the Ranji, it does affect someone – when you get 5 cr or 7 cr, players start thinking in their subconsciousness.

“So when a Ranji match comes, they try to avoid the last bit of effort required to dive and save a
boundary that might have been crucial for the domestic tea. So most of the time, those have been left alone, avoided, and that is a fact.

“Then they try to find a reason, maybe a niggle. Earlier, what used to happen? Players turned up for their sides even while carrying an injury, but now they are trying to sit out the game and avoid the next couple of games. So these things are happening, and it is a fact but I do not blame the players outright; we are all equally guilty of it,” he added.



BCCI IPL IPL 2024 Ishan Kishan Manoj Tiwary Shreyas Iyer