Senior opener Shikhar Dhawan has been dropped from the top-most category of the latest Central Contracts list for India players, while young Rishabh Pant was rewarded with an entry into the A category. The BCCI announced the annual player retainership for 2018-19 on Thursday.

The elite list comprises only three players -- skipper Virat Kohli, his limited-overs deputy Rohit Sharma and Jasprit Bumrah.

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Dhawan, who isn't a part of the Test setup and has had a poor last three months in the limited-overs formats, has been demoted from A-plus to A category.

The A-plus category players get a yearly retainer fee of Rs 7 crore, while 'A' category players get richer by Rs 5 crore.

Seamer Bhuvneshwar Kumar, who has also fallen off the radar as an all-format player, has also been demoted to Grade A.

Pant, the young wicketkeeper-batsman, has been rewarded for his good show in Test cricket and has jumped directly into A group after being ignored last year.

Hardik Pandya and K. L. Rahul continue to remain in B category.

The other players in the 'A' category are Dhoni, Dhawan, Bhuvneshwar, Mohammad Shami, Ravichandran Ashwin, Ishant Sharma, Ravindra Jadeja, Kuldeep Yadav, Cheteswar Pujara and Ajinkya Rahane.

Chinaman Kuldeep, who has become India’s frontline spinner in all three formats, has been promoted to A from the 'B' category. Murali Vijay, who was in the A category until last year, has been dropped altogether after a dismal Test tour of Australia.

Cheteshwar Pujara, despite his stupendous show in Australia, remains in the 'A' category since he plays only the Test format.

The 'C' category, where a player receives Rs 1 crore, comprises Dinesh Karthik, Ambati Rayudu, Manish Pandey, Hanuma Vihari, Khaleel Ahmed, Kedar Jadhav and wicketkeeper Wriddhiman Saha, who missed the most of the season due to an injury and last played for India in January 2018.