Would you like a no-strings attached gift of Rs 15 lakh? If you’ve played a significant number of Tests or ODIs for India you could get lucky.
The Cricketers’ Benefit Fund Series (CBFS) played in Sharjah made 44 former Indian cricketers richer by up to $35,000 each (Rs 17 lakh approx) between 1981 and 2000. Madhav Mantri was the first beneficiary and Navjot Sidhu the last.
Ever since the match-fixing storm broke in early 2000, the Board of Control for Cricket in India refused to play in Sharjah, a venue where more ODIs have been played than any other ground. This meant that several former cricketers missed out on benefit purses from the CBFS.
Earlier in the year, a Board working committee passed a resolution deciding to pay those who missed out a one-time sum of Rs 15 lakh. So far, four candidates — Mansur Ali Khan Pataudi, Ajit Wadekar, Farukh Engineer and Abid Ali — have received money.
They were among four of the original CBFS nominees for 2001, when the Board’s ban on playing in Sharjah came into effect, and hence were compensated, said a source. It’s unclear whether more players will benefit, but it is understood that some like Chetan Sharma, have written to the Board asking if they were eligible.