The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) on Thursday announced the annual central contracts for the players for the calendar year 2021-22. Indian star trio of Skipper Virat Kohli, his limited-overs deputy Rohit Sharma and speedster Jasprit Bumrah has been given contracts of Grade A+, which is the highest of all.
All these three players were in the elite grade in the last calendar year also and have retained their places this time too. Virat Kohli, Rohit Sharma and Jasprit Bumrah being in the top bracket will earn INR 7 Crores annually.
As many as 28 Indian cricketers were handed the central contracts by BCCI this time.
Dashing all-rounder Hardik Pandya has been given a promotion despite missing out on most of the international games due to a back injury. He has been put in Grade A which is worth INR 5 Crores annually.
“Hardik is very much in line to play Test matches in England and will be one of the most important players after our A+ cricketers when we play the T20 World Cup. So Hardik’s promotion is about what he brings to the team. That’s what the selectors have factored in,” a senior BCCI official told PTI on conditions of anonymity.
After inking the history in Australia’s Gaba, Shubman Gill and Mohammad Siraj have been given central contracts. Both of them are now in Grade C while Shardul Thakur managed to jump to a Grade B contract.
The Grade A+ contract is worth INR 7 Crores, Grade A is worth INR 5 Crores, Grade B is worth INR 3 Crores while Grade C is INR 1 Crores.
Pacer Bhuvneshwar Kumar has been demoted to Grade B after having a long haul of injuries in the past 1.5 years. Also, he has been not an all-format player right now.
One notable change is of spinner Kuldeep Yadav. The tweaker has been pushed down to Grade C directly from Grade A.
“Kuldeep is slowly slipping down the radar and he should consider himself lucky that he has managed to retain his contract,” said the source.
BCCI Central Contracts 2021-22 List:
GRADE A+ (Rs 7 crore): Virat Kohli, Rohit Sharma, Jasprit Bumrah.