The BCCI's one-time benefit payment to former cricketers has, however, has caused disappointment to the country's women players.
While the male cricketers were handed cheques during the IPL, women cricketers, both past and present, feel the gesture should have been extended to them as well as they too have nurtured Indian cricket.
“I don't see any reason why women cricketers should not be considered for this award and honour. After all, they too have played the same game and have enriched the sport with their contributions,” said for India player, Sandhya Aggarwal. “We do get pension from the BCCI, but this reward too shouldn't have eluded us.”
India skipper Mithali Raj agreed with Aggarwal. “The BCCI runs women cricket now, and it should honour and reward the former women cricketers in whatever way it can. There was, after all, hardly any money in women's cricket till sometime back, so any such move will certainly be a big help to many,” she said.
Women's cricket has come a long way since the BCCI took it under its wings, with significant improvement in infrastructure, facilities and opportunities to play. And that's what keeps leading India bowler, Jhulan Goswami, hopeful the BCCI would sooner or later extend this benefit to women players as well. “The BCCI has changed the face of women's cricket in the last few years. I am sure they will look into it and reward former women players too, sooner rather than later.”
However, the National Commission for Women has taken exception to the women players being overlooked. “Why this discrimination? If former male players are entitled to the payment, women should also get it,” said NCW chairperson Mamta Sharma. “I have raised the issue with the sports minister and will soon write to the BCCI president as well,” she said.
(with PTI inputs)