Sameer Dighe resigns as Mumbai coach
The former India wicketkeeper had been in charge for two years in which the team did not win any trophies.
Sameer Dighe has resigned as Mumbai coach due to personal reasons. The MCA's Cricket Improvement Committee (CIC) headed by former India fast bowler Ajit Agarkar is likely to convene soon to discuss potential replacements ahead of the new season in September. Dighe, a former India wicketkeeper, was appointed on a one-year deal in 2017 as successor to Chandrakant Pandit, who led Mumbai to two successive Ranji Trophy finals. They won their last championship in February 2016. Mumbai endured a difficult 2017-18 domestic season, where they were were beaten in the quarterfinal of both the Ranji Trophy and Vijay Hazare Trophy, by Karnataka and Maharashtra respectively, while losing three of their four matches in the Syed Mushtaq Ali T20s.
Goud, Aravind take over as Karnataka's coaches
Karnataka have appointed Yere Goud and S Aravind as the team's batting and bowling coaches for the 2018-19 domestic season. Goud, a former Karnataka captain, was one of the most prolific run-getters in domestic cricket during a career that stretched from the 1994-95 season until his retirement in October 2012. He scored 7650 first-class runs at an average of 45.53, the bulk of them coming in the Ranji Trophy for Railways and Karnataka. Aravind was a key member of a highly successful Karnataka side that claimed back-to-back domestic trebles, winning the Ranji Trophy, the Irani Cup and the Vijay Hazare Trophy in 2013-14 and 2014-15. He took 186 first-class wickets at 23.94, primarily bowling left-arm seam but also occasionally left-arm orthodox spin. His exploits in domestic cricket and in the IPL earned him one India cap - a T20I against South Africa in October 2015. Aravind announced his retirement from all forms of cricket at the end of Karnataka's victorious campaign in the 2017-18 Vijay Hazare Trophy.
BCCI to continue with neutral curators for 2018-19 season
Encouraged by the positive feedback during the 2017-18 season, the BCCI is set to continue with neutral curators for the upcoming Ranji Trophy. This matter, and others, was discussed during the two-day Curators' conclave in Mumbai last week.
After trialling neutral venues in 2016-17, the BCCI reverted to the traditional 'home and away' concept last year with neutral curators to ensure state associations didn't doctor pitches to suit their team's strengths.
Mumbai captain Aditya Tare, however, has a different view. "I would also not mind local curators preparing the pitch completely because that gives home advantage to the teams. Also it makes it a bit more challenging when you go away and play against your strengths.
"In Test cricket also, you have the home team preparing pitches and the away side has to come and face challenging conditions. Why not have that in domestic cricket?"
Meanwhile, the grounds and pitches committee is said to have been satisfied with the local curators' level of preparedness towards maintaining surfaces during the course of the recently-concluded IPL season.
The Cricket Association of Bengal won the Best Ground award in 2018. The Eden Gardens hosted nine IPL matches, including two playoffs that were originally slated for Pune.