India's annual contracts 2020/21: Hardik Pandya promoted to Grade A
The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) announced India's annual contract list for the season 2020/21 on Thursday. All-rounder Hardik Pandya has been promoted from Grade B (Rs. 3 crore) to Grade A (Rs. 5 crore). Meanwhile, fast bowler Shardul Thakur also moved from Grade C (Rs. 1 crore) to B after his impressive performances against Australia and England. Here is more.
The only players with Grade A+ contract
Indian captain Virat Kohli, opening batsman Rohit Sharma and premier fast bowler Jasprit Bumrah are the only players with an A+ contract (Rs. 7 crore) in the list. The trio features in all the three formats for India.
India's annual player contracts list (Grade A, B, and C)
Grade A (Rs. 5 crore): Ravichandran Ashwin, Ravindra Jadeja, Cheteshwar Pujara, Ajinkya Rahane, Shikhar Dhawan, KL Rahul, Mohammed Shami, Ishant Sharma, Rishabh Pant, Hardik Pandya. Grade B (Rs. 3 crore): Wriddhiman Saha, Umesh Yadav, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Shardul Thakur, Mayank Agarwal. Grade C (Rs. 1 crore): Kuldeep Yadav, Navdeep Saini, Deepak Chahar, Shubman Gill, Hanuma Vihari, Axar Patel, Shreyas Iyer, Washington Sundar, Yuzvendra Chahal, Siraj.
Gill, Siraj rewarded for their match-winning performances Down Under
The likes of Shubman Gill and Mohammed Siraj, who starred for India Down Under, have been handed a Grade C contract. All-rounder Axar Patel, who scripted history in the Test series against England, is also included in the same list. Besides, Manish Pandey and Kedar Jadhav, who haven't played international cricket of late, are excluded from the contract list.
India's spin twins demoted in the contract list
India's spin twins Kuldeep Yadav and Yuzvendra Chahal have also plunged in the contract list. The duo has been demoted to Grade C. Kuldeep, who was an all-format player once, is struggling to play in even one format these days. His last Test appearance before playing against England (2021) came more than a year ago. Meanwhile, Chahal only plays white-ball cricket for India.