On the 15th of April, the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) announced the list of annual contracted cricketers. While some of the most obvious and prominent names made it to the group, a glaring omission in T Natarajan surprised many. Left-arm seamer T Natarajan debuted in India’s tour of Australia last year that extended to early 2021 and impressed. Nevertheless, he could not earn a spot in BCCI’s list of contracted players.
T Natarajan’s ODI debut took place in Canberra in Australia as he snared two wickets to shape India’s win. The left-arm bowler featured in all three T20Is against Australia after that and bowled brilliantly at death that played an integral role in men in blue’s series victory. On the other hand, Natarajan’s Test debut occurred at the Gabba in Australia.
The 29-year old played a few white-ball games in the home series against England; however, he could not display the same consistency. The Salem-born bowler might have performed incredibly in his limited opportunities; however, his 1 Test, 2 ODIs, and 4 T20Is did not meet the criteria set by the BCCI. According to BCCI’s rules, the standard to received a central contract is to play a minimum of three ODIs, eight T20Is or 10 ODIs in a season.
T Natarajan still has an opportunity to be in the annual contract list:
Nevertheless, the yorker specialist has a chance to make it to the annual central contract list if he manages to play two more Tests in England this year or 6 ODIs or T20Is before September 2021. Nevertheless, the left-arm bowler would not get the full payment and will get the money on a pro-rata basis.
The likes of Krunal Pandya, Suryakumar Yadav, and Prithvi Shaw missed out; however, they have an opportunity if they complete the stipulated matches. Shubman Gill managed to get it as he played three Test in Australia. Rohit Sharma, Jasprit Bumrah, and Virat Kohli are the only three players to have an A+ grade contract from the BCCI, having a salary of INR 7 crores per year.