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Former champions Rajasthan will participate in the 2014-15 Ranji Trophy after the Rajasthan High Court on Wednesday paved the way for the state’s cricketers to participate in all domestic competitions.
The court named selection committees for senior, junior and women’s teams which were accepted by both Rajasthan Cricket Association and the BCCI — two bodies which have been at loggerheads ever since former IPL chairman Lalit Modi was elected RCA’s president in May.
The order was passed by Justice MN Bhandari, who was hearing a petition filed on behalf of 75 Rajasthan players against the BCCI.
According to a top BCCI official, the team is likely to be called Rajasthan XI. As per the copy of the order, national selector Roger Binny will be part of the Ranji selection panel and will be assisted by five local selectors, namely Vinod Mathur, Sanjay Vyas, Nazmul Hussain, Taposh Chatterjee and Vivekbhan Singh.
Similarly, BCCI’s junior selection committee chairman and former Baroda opener Connor Williams will oversee the junior selection panel with Kuldeep Mathur, Pramod Yadav and Sukhvinder Singh. The women’s selection committee will be headed by BCCI nominee Rita Dey. The BCCI counsel told the High Court that they agreed with the arrangement.
Later, both the parties claimed moral victory. In a media release issued by the BCCI, secretary Sanjay Patel said: “Today, the initiative of the BCCI to normalise the situation in Rajasthan…was recognised by the Rajasthan High Court taking control over participation of the players.” Patel, however, mentioned that the ban on the RCA will continue.
“All the costs of the players, officials, staff, ground rent, selectors etc as suggested by the BCCI would be borne by the BCCI. This arrangement has been made for the current season 2014-15. The suspension of the membership of the RCA continues and would not stand in the way of the players’ participation in BCCI tournaments.” For its part, the RCA held a media conference which was attended by association’s deputy president and Lalit Modi aide Mahmood Abdi, secretary Sumendra Tiwary and treasurer Pawan Goel.
“The office-bearers of RCA thank the Honourable High Court for giving the verdict in favour of Rajasthan players,” RCA’s press release said.
The Ranji Trophy begins on December 7.