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    BCCI tech committee suggests revamp

    A host of changes have been suggested by the BCCI technical committee headed by Sourav Ganguly.

    Mumbai: BCCI's Technical Committee is not in favour of hosting Ranji Trophy games in neutral venues and wants the existing 'home and away' format to continue for the next season.

    "The recommendations have not been that. At the end of the day the BCCI decides but I feel the home and away system should persist," said Ganguly after the committee's one-day sitting here on Friday.

    "The present Ranji Trophy format was discussed at length, and it was felt that the 'Elite-Plate' format be continued," said BCCI secretary and meeting convener Sanjay Jagdale.

    Significantly, the Board's Working Committee had decided to play Ranji games in neutral venues at its meeting in Chennai earlier this week and Friday's recommendation by the Technical Committee meant the ball has been thrown back to the WC's court.

    The Technical Committee has recommended to make Ranji Trophy quarterfinals and semifinals five-day games (at present only the final is played over five days) and wants a partial reversal of the schedule of domestic tournaments with Duleep Trophy to be followed by the Ranji Trophy.

    The committee has recommended that if a domestic match is played on a wicket that is 'underprepared' in the opinion of the match officials, then two points will be deducted from the host association's tally for the season.

    The committee also decided that number of short-pitched deliveries permitted per over in domestic one-day tournaments be increased from one to two and it will come into force in the inter-state one-day matches, starting on Monday.

    Ganguly did not agree that the Duleep Trophy had become redundant and said he was happy with the East Zone winning their maiden title this year.

    The panel wanted the use of Kookaburra balls in the inter-zonal tournament.

    The points system recommended by the panel for Ranji Trophy: outright win 5 pts; 1st innings lead but no outright win 3 pts; loss on first innings 1 pt; washout/weather interference with no first innings result 1 pt each; Innings win/win by 10 wickets 1 bonus pt; tie on first innings without outright result 1 pt each; tie on both innings 2 pts each; outright loss; 0 pt; first innings results not achieved without any weather interference 1 pt each.

    If a first-innings result is not obtained at the end of the scheduled play in a knock-out match, then the match will be extended into an additional day. If the first innings are not completed even on this additional day, then the winner will be decided by the spin of a coin.

    As per the recommendations of the panel, the senior domestic season should be rescheduled, and the tournaments played in the following order: Challenger Series for the NKP Salve Trophy; Duleep Trophy; Ranji Trophy; Irani Cup: Ranji champions vs Rest of India; One-day tournaments: Vijay Hazare Trophy and Deodhar Trophy; Domestic T20.

    The recommendations made by the Technical Committee will have to be ratified by the Working Committee, BCCI secretary Jagdale said.

    The Committee recommended the usage of floodlights during Test matches played in India.

    The Committee suggested "floodlights will be used during Test matches, if required, wherever the facility exists," Jagdale said.

    Floodlights had been used in the past in Test matches played in India whenever needed, but later the practise was discontinued.

    The committee's suggestion now has to be ratified by the all-powerful Working Committee of the Board when it meets next.

    Friday's Technical Committee meeting was attended by Ganguly, Krish Srikkanth (in his capacity as chairman of the Board's senior selection panel), Roger Binny (as a former Test cricketer), the five zonal representatives (Venkatapathy Raju, Shantanu Sugwekar, Arup Bhattacharjee, Chetan Chauhan, Rahul Sapru), Jagdale, BCCI CAO Prof. Ratnakar Shetty and BCCI's manager of cricket operations Suru Nayak.