The BCCI has finally woken up to the longstanding demand of putting in place a structure for India 'A' and under-19 tours.
In an effort to strengthen the supply line to the senior team, the BCCI has proposed a model that looks beyond domestic competition, thus emphasising on the need for more India 'A' and U-19 tours.
Similarly, on the lines of the ICC Future and Tours programme (FTP), the BCCI will be proposing to the ICC to carve out a similar structure for all international teams, who can be signatories to the FTP for all 'A' tours and bilateral U-19 tours. "We are meeting the ICC official on Monday to pitch a proposal to have an FTP for U-19 sand 'A' tours going forward. This will act as a natural graduation of players to the senior team," MV Sridhar, general manager, cricket operations, BCCI, told HT.
Explaining the model and how it will benefit the selection process, Sridhar said, "Ideally, the 'A' tour should start a little ahead of the senior team's and should overlap to an extent that some of the players who are in the 'A' team go into the senior side, which will help the logical progression as well as make them adapt to different conditions better, instead of straightaway drafting them to the senior side.
"Similarly, only around the U-19 World Cup, the U-19 team plays bilateral matches and few odd tournaments here and there. A regular U-19 FTP will ensure continuity as well as a platform for them to move up the ladder after they are done with their age group, and that's where the 'A' tour will come into the picture," said Sridhar.
If the FTP for 'A' and U-19 tours gets the ICC's approval, those on the fringes of the senior side will have an alternate window away from the domestic structure which can help them understand different conditions better.