'There will be injuries across India' - Shardul Thakur demands more break from BCCI after Ranji hundred

Updated - 03 Mar 2024, 08:20 PM

Shardul Thakur hits fantastic Ranji Trophy century
Shardul Thakur hits fantastic Ranji Trophy century [PC: X/Twitter]

Indian all-rounder Shardul Thakur has made a massive statement after his match-saving hundred for Mumbai in the Ranji Trophy semi-final against Tamil Nadu. Mumbai after day 2 were leading by 207 as they finished on 353/9 after Shardul’s ton. 

Shardul Thakur’s poignant comments came on the back of BCCI’s recent release of its new list of centrally contracted players. Thakur is placed in Grade C along with his 14 other Indian teammates. The BCCI announced the newly-released list of centrally contracted players on February 28. 

After his breathtaking knock against Tamil Nadu in the semi-final that kept his team alive in the contest, Thakur took a dig in many ways at the BCCI. He said that the BCCI needs to increase the number of breaks given in between Ranji Trophy games to ensure that the players are physically fit. 

“It’s difficult because we are playing First-Class matches with three-day gaps and I don’t think it has ever happened. When I started playing in the Ranji Trophy matches, the first three games used to have a three-day break, then a four-day break and then the knockouts had a five-day break. Now we have seen all matches are played at three-days’ gap, so it is extremely tough for domestic players to expect them to play 10 games in a row with just a three-day gap if the team reaches the final,” Thakur told reporters on Sunday, as quoted by TOI.

I think next year they will have to relook – Shardul Thakur Comments On BCCI

“I think next year they will have to relook at it and give more breaks (between Ranji Trophy matches). The schedule is becoming tighter and tighter. If boys keep playing like this for two more seasons, there will be a lot of injuries across the country,” Thakur stressed.

The BCCI made it mandatory for the players not playing international cricket to play in domestic cricket to make themselves available for national selection. In other words, the BCCI has made red-ball cricket compulsory for players who are willing to play international cricket. 

The BCCI even went to the extent of snubbing two key players who were part of the teams across formats for the last two years, Shreyas Iyer and Ishan Kishan. Both played in the World Cup for India, Shreyas even scored more than 500 runs in the tournament including a century in the semi-final against New Zealand. 

BCCI’s recent step has taken cricket experts within the Indian cricket fraternity by surprise. Moreover, KL Rahul and Shreyas Iyer are fighting long-term battles with their respective injuries. While Iyer is battling a back issue Rahul travelled to London for the treatment of his quad injury. Both batters have been out of the Indian Test team for over a month now. 

With the Indian players playing continuous cricket, leading up to the T20 World Cup 2024, Shardul Thakur’s words should be considered seriously by the BCCI and the Indian think tank.

 Talking about Shardul Thakur, he saved Mumbai from being in tatters when he walked out to bat at number nine. He scored 104 off 109 deliveries pulling Mumbai out of big trouble. He added a 79-run stand with Tushar Kotian (79*) to help Mumbai finish on 353/9. 

This was after his skipper Ajinkya Rahane scored 19 off 67 balls and the under-pressure Shreyas Iyer scored just 3 off 8 deliveries. Tamil Nadu, in their first innings, were bowled out for just 146 in the second semi-final. 

BCCI’s List Of Centrally Contracted Players (October 1st, 2023 to September 30th, 2024)

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.

Also Read: “Threshold of pain is an individual thing” – Sunil Gavaskar supports Shreyas Iyer amid central contract row

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BCCI BCCI Central Contracts Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) Ishan Kishan Shardul Thakur Shreyas Iyer