India news October 26, 2012

Ashwin awarded top BCCI contract

ESPNcricinfo staff

Offspinner Harbhajan Singh and seamer Ishant Sharma have been demoted from Grade A to B in the BCCI's list of annually contracted players, while offspinner R Ashwin, who has established himself as the leading spinner for India across all three formats, has been promoted from Grade B to A.

This means that the duo of Harbhajan and Ishant will draw a fixed income of Rs 50 lakh (approx $93,000) each from October 2012 to September 2013, instead of the Rs 1 crore (approx $186,000) that players with the top grade of contracts will get. Both bowlers seem to have been penalised for their lacklustre performance in the first half of the contract cycle.

With the BCCI's central contracts committee - consisting of president N Srinivasan, secretary Sanjay Jagdale and Sandeep Patil, the chairman of the all-India selection panel - having shrunk Grade A from 12 players to nine, Ashwin has been the biggest beneficiary, replacing Harbhajan as the only spinner in the top grade. There have been no replacements for Ishant, Rahul Dravid and VVS Laxman in the top category, with the latter duo having retired from international cricket during the course of the year.

The committee has also promoted Cheteshwar Pujara and Ajinkya Rahane from Grade C, which fetches Rs 25 lakh (around $46,500) annually, to B. Both Rahane and Pujara have been billed as leading contenders to fill spots over the long-term in the Test line-up. Umesh Yadav, who has impressed with the ball, and allrounder Irfan Pathan, who is back in national contention after a stint on the sidelines, have been elevated from Grade C to B.

Besides Harbhajan and Ishant, others who have been demoted include Praveen Kumar and Ravindra Jadeja, both of whom have been moved from Grade B to C.

Bowlers S Sreesanth and Jaydev Unadkat are omitted from last year's list of 37 players (the same number as this year). Seamer L Balaji and allrounder Yusuf Pathan return to the list, with Grade C contracts, while fast bowler Ashok Dinda is on the list for the first time.

Grade A: Rs 1 crore each (approx $186,000) Sachin Tendulkar, Mahendra Singh Dhoni, Zaheer Khan, Virender Sehwag, Gautam Gambhir, Suresh Raina, Yuvraj Singh, Virat Kohli, R Ashwin

Grade B: Rs 50 lakh each (approx $93,000) Harbhajan Singh, Ishant Sharma, Pragyan Ojha, Rohit Sharma, Cheteshwar Pujara, Ajinkya Rahane, Irfan Pathan, Umesh Yadav

Grade C: Rs 25 lakh each (around $46,500) Ravindra Jadeja, Amit Mishra, R Vinay Kumar, Munaf Patel, Abhimanyu Mithun, Murali Vijay, Shikhar Dhawan, Wriddhiman Saha, Parthiv Patel, Manoj Tiwary, S Badrinath, Piyush Chawla, Dinesh Karthik, Rahul Sharma, Varun Aaron, Abhinav Mukund, Ashok Dinda, Yusuf Pathan, Praveen Kumar, L Balaji

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • YOGENDRA on October 28, 2012, 16:20 GMT

    What is the use of paying $186,000 to Gambhir for working the whole year while he is making $2.2 million every year for playing 6 weeks in IPL and then Ravinder Jadeja is paid $46,500 while he makes $2.4 from the IPL.

  • Dummy4 on October 28, 2012, 14:07 GMT

    I have some suggestions for future gradings, tests : For batsmen - 1 point for every 20 runs scored, catch / wicket taken, weightage - points X 2 for being on the winning side, points X 1.5 for not being on the losing side, points X .75 if in the losing side. For bowlers / allrounders - 2 points for every 20 runs scored, .75 points for every catch / wicket taken, weightage - points X 2 for being on the winning side, points X 1.5 for not being on the losing side, points X .75 if in the losing side. Grades A, B & C basis threshold points indicating a minimum of 20 points / match for Grade A, 12 points for Grade B & 8 points for Grade C. Something similar could be worked out for Limited overs cricket. This would ensure some sort of cricketing merit in the contracts - Sachin would probably lose his contract because he has no cricketing merit, only emotional value.

  • s on October 28, 2012, 11:04 GMT

    If this isn't conclusive evidence that the Indian spin cupboard is bare, I don't know what is. Ashwin is mediocre at best and shouldn't be playing Test cricket.

  • cricket on October 28, 2012, 9:00 GMT

    In present situation I would like to see shikhar dhawan and rahane opening and including ishant,yadav & awana/pathan as pacers,ashwin ojha bhajji as spinners if selectors really think to do some good to indian cricket then select them for test cricket when selected then only will we know which pair is good gambhir sehwag or dhawan rahane,mind it rahane and dhawan are good puller and hooker good signs to succeed overseas.Though gambhir and sehwag are still good in one dayers.

  • HNL on October 28, 2012, 7:02 GMT

    The list of grade A cricketers has some names which deserve to be in grade C or below that. If recent performances are indeed the criteria for such grading, this whole list needs a thorough overhaul. Seniority ought to be discarded as the criteria since it carries no meaning if a senior player does not justify his seniority over an extended period of time.

  • Gaurav on October 28, 2012, 5:14 GMT

    @ Crindex :- That test match wass't a India was not all out in the second was declared as a draw..But yeah that match India should have won actually, but again it was R Ashwin, who dragged India to a winning position, imagine what could have happened if he didnt play that knock...

  • Matrix on October 27, 2012, 17:08 GMT

    Isnt this guy (Ashwin) converted an absolute chance of a Test win into a historical Test tie against the WI last Summer?

  • Dummy4 on October 27, 2012, 16:17 GMT

    If Balaji , Badrinath can get a place then CSK technical committee also should get C grade including CSK owner .

  • Magesh on October 27, 2012, 14:49 GMT

    Harbhajan, Ishant and Irfan should have been downgraded to C. I don't see them playing for India in near future. So why pay them 50 lakhs when they dont stand a chance to play for the national team in the near future?

  • adithya on October 27, 2012, 14:38 GMT


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