In a serious allegation against India’s Under-19 World Cup star Rajvardhan Hangargekar, the Commissioner of Sports and Youth Department, Maharashtra, Omprakash Bakoria, has claimed that the young cricketer had committed age-fudging.
According to Saamana newspaper, the IAS officer has written a letter to BCCI in which he has also sent evidence against the cricketer.
Rajvardhan Hangargekar Age Fraud
As per a report in Marathi Saamana newspaper, Bakoria in his letter to the BCCI said Rajvardhan Hangargekar is actually 21-years-old and not 19. He alleged that according to school records, Hangargekar’s date of birth is January 7, 2001.
However, it was Terna Public School’s headmaster who changed his date of birth to November 10, 2002, when Rajvardhan got admission in class VIII.
“Dharashiv CEO Rahul Gupta investigated Rajvardhan Hangargekar’s birth date. It was found that he was admitted to a public school in Dharashiv where his birthdate was listed as 10 January 2001. However, that was changed to 10th November 2002 before eighth grade,” Omprakash Bakoria wrote in his letter to the BCCI.
Some Cricketers are playing Cricket with fabricated Date of Birth Certificate. Cricketers who Indulge in a fraud in DOB not only violate core values of Crocket but also put genuine Cricketers in a disadvantages position. It’s against the integrity of sports.@bcci @SGanguly99
— Om Prakash Bakoria (@ombakoria) February 14, 2022
Hence, when Hangargekar was picked for India’s squad for the U19 World Cup (January 14-Feb 5), he was already 21 — not eligible for the age category. As per ICC, a player taking part in the U19 World Cup must be aged 19 or below (not less than 15) to be eligible.
“Yes, we have received a letter from the Maharashtra DYS. It is a serious allegation and we are looking into it. But at the moment he is free to play. We fully trust the system in place and,” a senior BCCI official told.
Rajvardhan Hangargekar Age Fraud – BCCI has recently mandated the TW3 method to determine the age to participate in U-16 tournaments. In Tanner Whitehouse 3 (TW3) method, an X-ray image of a person’s left wrist is analysed to determine and verify the eligibility of a player.
It is still not known, how Hangargekar cleared the TW3 test if he was over the minimum age. However, if proven guilty of age fraud, a player can be banned for two years while Rajvardhan Hangargekar will also be barred from participating in the IPL 2022.
ICC could also put additional sanctions on BCCI as he was part of the Playing XI that beat England in the final of the U19 World Cup.
Notably, in the recently concluded IPL 2022 mega auction, CSK roped Rajvardhan Hangargekar for INR 1.5 crores.