In a first in domestic cricket, first-class players to have contract system

Sourav Ganguly, BCCI, domestic cricket
The glitzy T20 event, featuring both Indian and international stars, gets underway on March 29 in Mumbai.

BCCI president Sourav Ganguly on Monday (October 28) hinted that a contract system will soon be in place for the thousands of first-class cricketers in India, providing them a much-needed sense of security.

Ganguly, in his first interview with the PTI, had mentioned that the financial health of domestic cricketers was paramount and he wanted to increase their match fees.

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In a move that could be a game-changer for domestic cricketers, the BCCI president wants to bring in a secured structured payment system just like the annual central contract for the country’s top international cricketers.

“We will bring in a contract system for first-class cricketers. We (office-bearers) will ask the new finance (sub) committee to prepare a contract system,” Ganguly told PTI during an exclusive interaction. “It’s just been four-five days and in between, there was a Diwali break. It will take about two weeks to assess everything and move forward. There is a lot of work going on.”

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Currently, a domestic cricketer annually earns around ₹25 to 30 lakh depending on the matches played. The match fee for a first-class game is ₹35,000 per day (excluding the daily allowance) and the domestic cricketers get 13% distributed amongst them from the gross revenue earned by BCCI through broadcast rights.

However, in a big country like India, working out modalities for the contract system will be a complex ask as every state has a different working mechanism. Whether the BCCI draws a broad outline for gradation of the players or instructs the state units to do the same, Ganguly is moving in the right direction.

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