The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) could help corporates in recruiting talented cricketers who fail to get selected for their state teams.
At a meeting in Mumbai on Saturday between the BCCI and the corporates short-listed for the inaugural Corporate Trophy to be held from September 1-8, lack of opportunities for the corporates and hence lack of recruitment were a general concern voiced by most of the representatives.
“The corporates suggested that they be allowed to participate in more open tournaments,” said a BCCI source. “They don't get to play in all tournaments. Only a handful are invited while a majority are state teams. The corporates sought BCCI's help in this.”
Some of the all-India tournaments like the Buchi Babu Memorial tournament in Chennai, the Moin-ud-Dowla Cup in Hyderabad, all-India Karnataka State Cricket Association tournament in Bangalore and JP Atray Memorial in Chandigarh invited state teams though one or two corporate teams also participated in them.
Search for rain-free venues
The BCCI is on a hunt to zero in on venues that would be free of rain for the tournament. The BCCI has identified Chennai, Bangalore, Visakhapatnam, Cuttack, Mohali, Dharamshala as venues. “Because of monsoons, not many of the grounds are available. We are looking at venues that could conduct the tournament without rain interruption,” he said.
The teams in the fray are Air India (Mumbai), Tatas Sports Club, BPCL, IOC, MRF, India Cements, Air India (Delhi), ITC, BSNL, ONGC, Combined Public Sector Unit team and a Combined Income Tax and Excise team. Five more teams — Reliance, All India Ports, Sahara India Group, Chemplast, Canara Bank — have shown interest in the tournament.
The tournament will be played in coloured clothing and the white Kookaburra ball will be used. Matches will be under lights wherever possible. Each team can include four Ranji Trophy players (not retired) employed by the corporate and two under-19 players who are on scholarship.