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NEW DELHI: Captain Virat Kohli’s unhappiness over Indian team’s packed schedule leading to lack of preparation time for the upcoming South Africa tour will be addressed by the Committee of Administrators (CoA) in the newly drafted Future Tour Programme (FTP) for the period 2019-2023.
Vinod Rai vows to change players’ payment structure
The Indian team management will also partner in deciding the cricket calendar.
CoA chairman Vinod Rai clarified at the ‘TOI Litfest Delhi’ on Sunday that the playing days of the Indian team will be reduced drastically from 140 days to a minimum 80 days per year in the 2019-2023 Futures Tour Programme (FTP), which is currently being prepared under the jurisdiction of the Supreme Court-appointed committee.
Ganguly backs Kohli on cramped schedule issue
“We can’t be killing the golden goose for the sake of revenue. That is why the players would be given a detailed presentation during the Delhi Test match (beginning on December 2), where their opinion will be taken into consideration by the BCCI. We will discuss the FTP with the team,” Rai said.
Rai also said reducing the number of matches that the Indian team is currently playing is the only way to prevent player burnout. “We are taking a 360 degree view of the situation before deciding on the FTP. The burnout of players is a serious issue. The fact that the Indian team would have only two days of rest before flying out for the South African series and start playing there without warm-up game shows that something isn’t right about the schedule,” Rai said.
On an average, the Indian team could be seen playing around 32 games – including Tests, ODIs and T20 Internationals – per year between 2019 and 2023 instead of the existing 50-plus games a year.
In the past, the top Indian players played between 105 to 120 days of international cricket in a year. But the board officials made an arrangement of squeezing in two games each for every association in a year and also gave the option of resting if any player wanted to opt out.
Provision for India-Pak series in FTP
It is learnt that the draft of the FTP would also have the provision for two to three India-Pakistan bilateral series. However, BCCI will not take any step on this issue without the prior permission of the Indian government. “The fact that FTP has a provision for India-Pakistan series doesn’t mean that it would translate into a reality. It would be subject to clearance from the Union government,” a top board official explained.