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Ex-cricketers welcome Bihar’s return to Ranji Trophy cricket

Bihar’s loss was Jharkhand’s gain as the state’s cricketers lost out once the BCCI changed its policies

cricket Updated: Jan 04, 2018 21:17 IST
Soumitra Bose
Soumitra Bose
Hindustan Times, New Delhi
Bihar cricket,Ranji Trophy,BCCI
The Board of Control for Cricket in India has been ordered by the Supreme Court to admit Bihar in Ranji Trophy and other domestic tournaments. (HT Photo)

The Supreme Court on Thursday directed the Board of Control for Cricket in India to allow Bihar play in the domestic first-class circuit from the coming season.

Cricketers from Bihar were denied the right to play Ranji Trophy after the BCCI sidelined a state that produced international cricketers like Ramesh Saxena, Saba Karim, Subroto Banerjee and Randhir Singh.

Bihar last played a Ranji game in 2003-04 but it was effectively a team from Jharkhand. MS Dhoni was the captain.

Acting on a long-standing petition filed by the Cricket Association of Bihar, a Supreme Court Bench, headed by Chief Justice Dipak Misra ordered the BCCI to re-admit Bihar into the first-class fold.

READ | Supreme Court directs BCCI to allow Bihar play Ranji Trophy, domestic cricket

It finally gave CAB secretary Aditya Verma some joy. It was Verma’s petition that had escalated the 2013 IPL betting and fixing scandal that eventually led to the ouster of two powerful BCCI presidents – N. Srinivasan and Anurag Thakur.

The Supreme Court’s order was passed “keeping in view the cause of cricket.”

“I am very happy for the entire cricket fraternity in Bihar. The state has unnecessarily suffered for the last 17-18 years. The junior boys are already playing at the national level, cricket should flourish now,” said Saba Karim, recently appointed as General Manager cricket operations of the BCCI.

Former speedster Banerjee, who moved to Vidarbha, said he was willing to return and serve Bihar cricket. His feelings was echoed by Randhir Singh.

Verma’s CAB is one of the two factions in Bihar cricket. But there are early signs of a compromise.

READ | IPL 2018 Retention: MS Dhoni back in CSK yellow, KKR release Gautam Gambhir

“All disputes should now be resolved. I was never pushing for control, my only appeal was to let the cricketers of Bihar play. Jharkhand was cleverly taking away all the attention. Thankfully, the court noticed the foul play,” said Verma to Hindustan Times.

Bihar Cricket Association secretary Ravi Shankar Prasad Singh promised to “work together.”

Following Thursday’s order, Bihar should get back its full membership once the new constitution, amended by the Committee of Administrators, comes into force.

First Published: Jan 04, 2018 21:16 IST