Inter-Zonal ties overlap with exams

BCCI has justified the decision to do away with the Vijay Hazare Trophy.

Inter-Zonal ties overlap with exams

Mumbai: The Board of Control for Cricket India’s decision to scrap the Vijay Hazare Trophy Inter Zonal One-Day competition for under-19 cricketers has come as a surprise to many, but the Board insists the decision has been taken to make the best junior cricketers available for the premier competitions.

Professor Ratnakar Shetty, Chief Administrative Officer, told Cricketnext that the Vijay Hazare Trophy had become a damp squib as it was held at a time when the under-19 boys have their exams.

"Our under-19 boys have to appear for their board exams in February which prevents them from participating in the crunch matches. The Inter Zonal under-19 tournament used to go on till January-February. That is why we have decided to do away with it and make the All India Under-19 Cooch Behar Trophy a four-day tournament which would be played on the same lines as the Ranji Trophy," Shetty said.

All the Under-19 tournaments to be played this year will have Elite and Plate division groups this year. The under-15 tournaments will be played in this format next season.

Shetty confirmed that the BCCI's Tours and Programmes Fixtures Committee has also split the Polly Umrigar tournament into the Plate and the Elite Group but the format will be implemented in the 2008-09 domestic season. "This year it will be played as Zonal and All-India tournament," he said.

Shetty feels also that it makes sense to play the Duleep Trophy before the Ranji Trophy. He said, "It was suggested in the coach and captain’s conclave that there was no point in playing the Duleep Trophy at the end of the season since the selection was based on the performance of the previous Ranji Trophy."



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