Indian domestic news

Ganguly to play Ranji Trophy to prepare for IPL

ESPNcricinfo staff

November 29, 2010

Comments: 45 | Text size: A | A

Sourav Ganguly leads Kolkata Knight Riders' victory lap after beating Mumbai Indians, Kolkata Knight Riders v Mumbai Indians, IPL 2010, Kolkata, April 19, 2010
Sourav Ganguly is keen to get into the groove ahead of the IPL © Indian Premier League
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Former India captain Sourav Ganguly is set to play in the Ranji Trophy for his state side Bengal, in a bid to attain top form and fitness ahead of IPL 2011. He will turn out in the match against Tamil Nadu that begins in Chennai on December 1.

"Even last year I played Ranji Trophy mainly to stay match-fit for the IPL," Ganguly told ESPNcricinfo. "This year again I want to keep myself in form for the IPL."

Ganguly retired from the international game in 2008, but continued to make sporadic appearances in the first-class scene, in addition to being an integral part of Kolkata Knight Riders' plans in the IPL. He said he would decide how many games he would play this first-class season based on Bengal's position going forward.

Going into the fifth round of the league phase, Bengal are fifth out of the eight teams in Group A. Ganguly's return will bolster the team that is likely to be without a few of its first-choice players for the potentially tough match against Tamil Nadu. Wicketkeeper Wriddhiman Saha will be unavailable since he is away on India duty, while reserve keeper Shreevats Goswami is down with viral fever.

© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.

Posted by silverraj50 on (December 2, 2010, 3:59 GMT)

@Thhhhilak Rajah- why make these degrading comments? I do not agree with your comments of Ganguly not having any class. Do you understand cricket?

And also what's the big fuss about Ganguly playing Ranji? It may help Bengal to gain some extra points!

Posted by   on (December 1, 2010, 16:45 GMT)

@Thilak Rajah : kindly check the number of runs this man has scored before coming up with such " Intelligent " statements.Tthe problem is that we have too many people watching cricket who dont understand the game..A player who has scored over 11K runs in ODI and taken 100 wickets cannot be a bad player..He was the man who guided India out of the dumps after the match fixing scandal..Even the great Sachin could not handle captaincy the way Sourav did..I agree that using Ranji trophy as practice for IPL is not right, but kindly refrain from bringing out personal emotions on this forum...

Posted by anonymousfan on (December 1, 2010, 8:57 GMT)

@DEV_MCT ... dude bengalis are still patriotic. But many of us do not agree with your idea of patriotism. A cricket match is just a game not a war and the Ranji trophy is just a domestic competition between Indian state squads. So where does patriotism come in here ? Unless of course you have confused parochialism with patriotism.

Posted by Prats6 on (December 1, 2010, 7:40 GMT)

I dont understand, if the sole purpose to play in Ranji Trophy is to gain some form for IPL, then its really not worth it. I know CAB will bend backwards to accommodate Saurav but is it really worth anything ? I have been a big fan of his character and guts but its really difficult to digest.

As a famous line goes, better to walk out than being thrown out ! Saurav is doing his reputation more harm than good.

Posted by   on (December 1, 2010, 5:33 GMT)

dada real hero in cricket he is staylesh sixer

Posted by   on (December 1, 2010, 4:26 GMT)

Guys u all ve forgot onething DADA's baseprice is jus 92 lacs but if KKR retains him it would've to pay 1.8m so it has decided to let him in to auction and buy him their so that they can spend on the other team members

Posted by DEV_ME on (December 1, 2010, 4:18 GMT)

Saurav is valuable player and leader in any form of the game at any age. The idea of playing first class cricket to regain form is excellent. Howeve the intent is incorrect. To play Ranji Super League to gain form for IPL ?!?!?!?! Shouldnt State of Bengal be the No. 1 priority for the Son of Bengal ??? And is this what you are taking the prestigious domestic tournament as, a practice game, a sparring round ?? Nope the intent is definitely not correct. And Bengal shouldnt allow this. If Saurav has to play, he has to play for the state and in all the games, if he gets his form and fitness back, thats a bonus. At blame is the CAB also, if what some have said is true, that CAB invited him to play since Bengal is at the bottom. Arent there any talented youngsters in Bengal, who will cherish the opportunity to play for their state and give their 100% for the state ? What happened, the the Bongs used to be a very fiery and patriotic lot once upon a time. Do youngsters lack the spirit ?

Posted by   on (December 1, 2010, 2:35 GMT)

Saurav Chandidas Ganguluy is still the best cricketer in all forms of the game according to me. Whether it is Ranji or IPL or International Cricket, his presence on the field makes a huge difference. I"m actually worried that he has been dropped by KKR. I'm gonna support whichever team dada plays for.

Posted by   on (December 1, 2010, 2:18 GMT)

Hey guys....just answer this simple question:

Who was the leading run scorer for KKR in the last IPL? And if you have watched IPL, who took some of the greatest catches in IPL last season?

Remember guys??? :) .. the 38 year old tiger will always roar back at you ....:)

Posted by   on (November 30, 2010, 21:36 GMT)


Sourav Ganguly, ex- Indian skipper is likely to be removed from the Kolkata Knight Riders team for IPL 4.

Ganguly seems to have lost his star status in the IPL and as per sources, Kolkata Knight Riders aka KKR has no interest to hang on to Ganguly.

Kolkata Knight Riders is one of t he most glitzy teams of IPL with its co-owner being Shah Rukh Khan. However, in the last three seasons of IPL the team showed no progress which led the team management to seek for an absolute revamping of the team.

An anonymous KKR official said, "It's up to our coach Dav Whatmore to take a final call on all cricket-related matters. For the last three years we didn't have anything to show for it and we want to resurrect things."

Posted by   on (November 30, 2010, 15:12 GMT)


Posted by   on (November 30, 2010, 14:35 GMT)

Thanks Dada for playing Ranji, we were out of fun for some time as we were missing your clumsiness on the cricket ground, no one to replace you on that. Your playing to KKR remains to be seen, getting into another franchise may not happen (Hope So),

Have you practiced grounding your bat when you run yet? Like the saying goes, form is temporary and class is permanent and you dont have neither.

Posted by nzcricket174 on (November 30, 2010, 11:04 GMT)

Its interesting that he is playing serious cricket as preparation for joke cricket. Serious cricket being Ranji Trophy and the joke cricket being IPL. Either way, good on him.

Posted by anonymousfan on (November 30, 2010, 10:15 GMT)

Some big pundits here are suggesting that Ganguly used his CAB connections to get into the Ranji squad. The fact is that the team management asked for his services since they lost key players due to illness before the tough TN match. Read the Bengali newspaper ABP to get the correct picture. Check your facts ppl before shooting off run-of-the mill comments.

Posted by raaghul30 on (November 30, 2010, 9:34 GMT)

DADA... DADA... great entry... give some oppurtunity for the young players too... dont play in RANJI...

Posted by   on (November 30, 2010, 9:21 GMT)

My God!!!!!Whatever dada does it becomes a point of discussion and it spreads so fast..Thats why he is the most fascinating cricketer of all time having ability to produce dual opinions on whatever he does....He is playing ranji man!!!!!!!!!!!And that also for few months and that also for a team which is almost lying at the bottom....I don't see any problem in that...Whats the point in discussing about it so much I don't know...And please do not term all these things as selfishness..Whatever he did for team India and still doing for kolkata is the passion to perform for his team thats it!!!!!!All the best dada....

Posted by   on (November 30, 2010, 8:37 GMT)

Its not a bad decision if Saurav plays the IPL. In all T20 matches, Sourav has a strike-rate of 109.74 which may not seem good but it is still way good for partnership building and doing role of grafter (similar to Michael Clarke in Australian T20 team).

In 2010 IPL season, his strike-rate rose to 117.66, and team-mates like domestic T20 professionals like Brad Hodge & David Hussey had strike-rates lesser than Ganguly's. Ganguly is getting scrutinized because the entire team's bad showing, the same way Rahul Dravid got for RCB in the first season

Posted by SayakBhattacharyya on (November 30, 2010, 8:12 GMT)

@all the Ganguly Bashers

How many times u guys had to bite the dust after criticizing Ganguly's inclusion in a team , be it India or Bengal or KKR? Would you guys ever learn a lesson?

Regarding the age factor , I guess Kumble and Dravid are only 19 year olds playing for their respective franchise. Why the hell the age factor comes into play only for Ganguly?

When he was in the test team , it was being said that he is blocking a youngsters place? Can you see any solid replacement at no. 6 after the couple of years he has retired? Yuvi is already dropped and Raina is on the vere of getting dropped.

Open ur eyes and accept the truth my dear friends, class is permamanet and that's why dada is still valuable to Bengal and KKR.

Posted by Rohan0309 on (November 30, 2010, 8:03 GMT)

Dada will definitely play in the IPL! KKR or no KKR, Dada is in IPL for sure. If SRK is a good businessman, he cannot afford to keep Dada out of the KKR side! :D

Posted by DPramod on (November 30, 2010, 7:44 GMT)

Ganguly's decision to play for Bengal in the First Class season would surely benefit Bengal - but only in the short term. If Ganguly had decided to commit himself to the West Bengal for the entire season (or atleast most of the season) by preparing and playing with the team, it would have given many of the youngsters in the team an opportunity to watch, interact and learn from the ways of a successful International. Bengal Cricket too would have been served well by the grooming received by these youngsters.

However his current motive - to get match fit for the coming IPL season is selfish and deny's an up and coming youngster an opportunity to get exposure at the First Class level. It also speaks volumes about Ganguly's influence and the CAB's spinelessness if he is allowed to get away with cherry picking matches to suit his whims and fancies.

Posted by 26raghu on (November 30, 2010, 7:04 GMT)

Come on dada .. u dont have to play ranij trophy or IPL to prove your class .. Ur already a legend .. Hope other players in ur team perform to win matches for KKR .

Posted by   on (November 30, 2010, 6:59 GMT)

There is nothing wrong in this anyway - dnt understand why AGE comes up only when Sourav plays any format of the game - he was forced to retire in 2008, when he was at the peak of his career., He had to retire - now look @ this from another side - bengal has no talent coming up in last 5 years to fill Dada's boots - let alone India !!!

People like Shashanka Manohar & Srinivas who ousted DADA , are now allowing Dravid to play @ the age of 38 !!!! I think bengal is in a precarious position and Dada has to come in to fill the place of a saviour !!!!

those who r screaming that DADA is blocking some ones place > please name a player who can still take his position in Indian Team/Bengal team and can pull bengal out !!! Its sad that Still bengal need him to bail them out of trouble !!!!

Posted by tikna on (November 30, 2010, 6:57 GMT)

Bengal is in a soup anyways so trying Ganguly may not be such a bad idea except that if I were in the opposition I would pray that he fields for extended period. Also I just hope that the CAB has the good sense of expoliting that marketing opportunity to bring in some crowd to the match because of Ganguly`s presence

Posted by   on (November 30, 2010, 6:27 GMT)

He is always the Hero and a great Winner...,

Posted by gfthgh on (November 30, 2010, 6:06 GMT)

iam a big fan of sourav. But this is not fair. he last year told that he will not take part in longer format for bengal.he not playing continuseley after his retyrement so it is very good to not spoil his fame.He have the talent but the age is the main problem. lost of parts in our body will not work as efficent as you are in 20's.he is not a strong man even in 20's. dont compare him with the last year onwards he not 100% professionlal towards cricket.he is rtyared and not palying compitative cricket it matter -vely and adds to retyrement.slow strike rate is bigger problem than scoring. because of sourav ganguley india lost some matches these are the few 1)1996 titan cup leage stage vs sa . 1997 december vs srilanka in india. 3) 2007 world cup.

Posted by   on (November 30, 2010, 6:04 GMT)

@ Maulik, Chhetri, Viper2: The other side of ur argument is, on one hand, Sachin playing on after all those records and endorsements, blocking a youngster's place in the national team no less is fine even though hes the same age as Ganguly. But Ganguly doing the same in domestic cricket is selfish?

For my part, I was actually looking forward to him starting the season rather thn coming in late, irrespective of wether or not he was going to play the IPL. We need guys like Sourav in the Ranji trophy, to share their experience as well as draw in the crowds.

If someone needs to be criticised its guys like Sachin who dnt even bother playing the domestic circuit. They may pick and choose matches, but at least be there with the youngsters, in the dressing room, to guide them coach them or just be there.

At least Souravs going to be doing that.

Posted by KARTHIKMANOJ on (November 30, 2010, 5:18 GMT)

@sai roshan kindly respect him.. he is a legend and he is the one who changed the face of our indian team.. ganguly is not selfish.. he could have played for any english county team for practice and even make good money from it.. but he chose ranji.. u cant field an inexperienced team for a ranji match.. bengal desperately need some experience and there is no better man than sourav.. in fact CAB requested him to play and thats an official news released by CAB.. SO THINK TWICE BEFORE U WRITE ABOUT DADA..

Posted by   on (November 30, 2010, 5:15 GMT)

Though I am great fan of Dada, I do not see any point in his playing Ranji Trophy Match, having retired from the first class cricket. To say that this is in prepaeration for IPL matches does not make sense. IPL is a 20 over game and Ranji fixtures are 4 day ones. To keep fit and in touch, one should not resort to come back from the retirement and play first-class matches which deprives another cricketer his legitimate place in the team. First of all, if he fails it damages his reputation. Secondly, it affects the chance of an youngster who has a cerrtain numbe in the side and is focused in the game. Last year also, Ganguly did this and hope he will not do the same mistake. The coach and CAB should step in firmly and put an end to this act of the former India captain. Ganguly himself will give a re-think of this action of his and put an end to this.

Posted by KARTHIKMANOJ on (November 30, 2010, 5:09 GMT)

good thing for bengal.. the bengal team is struggling now.. some of their main players are ill.. they need a guy like ganguly to strengthen their team upto some level because they face tamil nadu in their next game which is one of the strong contenders for the ranji title..

Posted by anver777 on (November 30, 2010, 5:06 GMT)

Mr.Ganguly its high time for u to quit playing cricket & join BCCI or follow the footsteps of Stephen Fleming & coach KKR team in IPL 2011...... at least youngsters will learn & gain something from u !!!!!!!!!!!!

Posted by Raj_pandian on (November 30, 2010, 4:37 GMT)

No franchise is gonna consider him for sure... come on dada please dont come back and spoil ur name

Posted by sanzo5 on (November 30, 2010, 4:18 GMT)

i dont think there is anything wrong in sourav playing in these games.... he played well in IPL and his strike rate was less only because he did not have any kind of support while batting from his other team mates last year or in any edition of IPL... wickets keep falling and he will be fighting things out in the other end.. when players like hayden, langer, jayasurya, mcgrath, gilchrist... they all played and are still palying even after reaching 40.. then why not sourav??? why is age a concern for indian players alone??? cricket is all about playing 11 fit players who are in good form... age is not a criteria...

Posted by   on (November 30, 2010, 3:52 GMT)

"With several players falling sick due either dengue or viral fever, the CAB couldn't take any risk but to send Ganguly to Chennai on an SOS basis."....."Ganguly's last first-class match was against Delhi last season when he scored 152 to save Bengal who were in the relegation zone."....Hope this answers those who are questioning his comeback into the team. And please stop bringing in the 'age' excuse. Age is only a number.

Posted by Viper2.0 on (November 30, 2010, 3:36 GMT)

Now why do u want to play in ranji by taking some youngsters place who would have worked very hard to be in the bengal team.Sorry to say,this is simply selfishness on your part so that you can prepare yourself for the IPL.

Posted by   on (November 30, 2010, 2:05 GMT)

Sourav Ganguly was the fourth highest scorer of IPL 2010, and clearly the best in KKR. He practically carried the team on his shoulders. Hence, if he wants to play Ranji to keep himself match fit, I don't see anything wrong with that. In any case, it will be good for Bengal. Those talking of age, I don't understand why the question of age always comes up only when Sourav Ganguly is concerned. It would actually seem to an onlooker that everyone else playing the game is a teenager. I enjoyed his performances in IPL'10 and look forward to see him play in IPL'11.

Posted by   on (November 30, 2010, 2:02 GMT)

@sai roshan chhetri: if u think that players in the ranji team won't like his come back then i am sorry to say dear friend u r absolutely this point of time nothing cud be better than dada's presence in the team & it will indeed boost the player's confidence who r currently struggling at 5th place in the points table in their grup @balu vaithinathan: he will most definitely stay at KKR so there is no point in debating which IPL franchisee will bid for him @maulik shah: u got ur "IPL MONEY" point wrong.......dada does not need to play for money coz he comes from one of the most well-off families in money is definitely not a problem for him

Posted by TRAM on (November 30, 2010, 1:53 GMT)

@jithin001 >>>>please understand that he was the top scorer for kolkata in the last year's IPL

you're right ! At what scoring rate?? I would love to have him and more batsmen like him in my opposition team.

If you are looking at the totals and the averages like Ravi Shastri, Gavaskar and the media, you need to wake up. Compare his scoring rate with other ordinary players. He was blocking and wasting the overs.

Posted by   on (November 30, 2010, 1:45 GMT)


Posted by jithin001 on (November 30, 2010, 0:48 GMT)

People who are against the decision of ganguly...please understand that he was the top scorer for kolkata in the last year's IPL.None of the youngsters played as good as Dada in the IPL previous seasons.Whatever be the game....This decision to play in Ranji shows his dedication!!!Gud luck Dada....

Posted by   on (November 30, 2010, 0:46 GMT)

Saurav is a powerful man in CAB,he is using his powers to get a place in the team.I am sure none of the players in the side are happy.They wont be able to play their natural game for the side..Saurav can get into so called groove by playin with the local teams in kolkata there are many good teams where hew can play..Ronji trophy is a platform for a youngster to get a place in national colors.I think CAB is scared of the Prince of kolkata... common GANGULY dont be selfish...leave the place such that one youngster can be the part of the team...

Posted by SRT_GENIUS on (November 29, 2010, 23:35 GMT)

Correct! That's why Sachin normally avoids Ranji - to give youngsters a chance.

Posted by   on (November 29, 2010, 23:12 GMT)

Yeah .. dada's backk ! ; )

Posted by   on (November 29, 2010, 20:36 GMT)

I'd be very surprised if any franchise seriously considered him to be in their playing XI.

Posted by   on (November 29, 2010, 19:56 GMT)

come on ganguli..........plz stop wasting one place in bengal ranji team....u r now retire.... so enjoy comentary........i love u and ur my fav cricketer.......but it doesnt mean k.....every year u come back in ranji team for ur sake of ipl money and wasting one place of youngster.........if u want money and wanna play in ipl then do practice at ur home........not at cost of ranji player...........

Posted by bsanga on (November 29, 2010, 19:48 GMT)

All the Best DADA...You'll ROCK

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