The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) is reportedly set to announce central contracts for 2021/22 season.
BCCI Central Contracts 2021/22
Out of favour veteran batter Cheteshwar Pujara and former Test vice-captain Ajinkya Rahane were downgraded in the latest central contracts list of the BCCI that was ratified by the Board’s Apex Council.
The BCCI has four categories – A which has annual remuneration of Rs 7 crore while A, B, and C categories are valued at Rs 5 crore, Rs 3 crore, and Rs 1 crore respectively.
Last time, 28 cricketers were provided central contracts but this year, 27 have been awarded contracts with Rohit Sharma, Virat Kohli, and Jasprit Bumrah static as A players.
Accordingly, Pujara, Rahane, and Ishant Sharma, who were in Grade A are now in Grade B, after a slump in form that saw them being dropped from the upcoming home Test series against Sri Lanka.
Indian all-rounder Hardik Pandya is set to be demoted to Grade C in the BCCI Central Contracts. Senior opener Shikhar Dhawan has also been downgraded to Grade C. The duo is among the 27 players who will be awarded contracts for the 2021/22 season. The list was finalized by the BCCI Apex Council through a virtual meeting on Wednesday.
BCCI Central Contracts list for 2021-22
Grade B (INR 3 crore/USD 400,000): Cheteshwar Pujara, Ajinkya Rahane, Axar Patel, Shardul Thakur, Shreyas Iyer, Mohammed Siraj, and Ishant Sharma.
Grade C(INR 1 crore/USD 130,000): Shikhar Dhawan, Umesh Yadav, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Hardik Pandya, Washington Sundar, Shubman Gill, Hanuma Vihari, Yuzvendra Chahal, Suryakumar Yadav, Wriddhiman Saha, Mayank Agarwal, and Deepak Chahar.
Senior players Virat Kohli, Rohit Sharma, and Jasprit Bumrah retain their A+ status. However, Ravindra Jadeja and Rishabh Pant have not earned any promotion despite being match-winners in all three formats.
The duo has been awarded an annual contract of Rs. 5 crores along with KL Rahul, Ravichandran Ashwin, and Mohammad Shami. As expected, Ajinkya Rahane and Cheteshwar Pujara have been demoted.
Like Hardik, opener Shikhar Dhawan has also been demoted in the Central Contracts. The latter plays only one format now (ODIs).
Dhawan played his last Test in 2018, while he has been out of reckoning in T20Is with the emergence of new talents. In a career spanning over a decade, the left-handed batter has smashed 10,358 runs at 40.14 across formats.