Uttarakhand will play the Ranji Trophy, says Vinod Rai

“Though Uttarakhand is still not a member, it will be allowed to play the Ranji Trophy,” CoA chief, Vinod Rai, told Sportstar.

Rai that the Uttarakhand state government has agreed to give the two stadiums to host the domestic fixtures. (File Photo)   -  Special Arrangement

Even as the Board of Control for Cricket in India has opposed Uttarakhand’s debut in the Ranji Trophy this season, the Supreme Court-appointed Committee of Administrators has clarified that the state will play the tournament.

“Though Uttarakhand is still not a member, it will be allowed to play the Ranji Trophy,” CoA chief, Vinod Rai, told Sportstar.

The seasoned administrator also added that the CoA is committed to the cause. “The court (Supreme Court) asked us to look into it and we have just done that,” Rai said, adding: “I don’t know what decision has been taken at the BCCI SGM, but irrespective of whatever it is, the state (Uttarakhand) will play Ranji Trophy.”

The CoA set up the Uttarakhand Cricket Consensus Committee earlier this month to ensure that the state got cricketing exposure, 18 years after it was formed. Announcing the decision a couple of days back, the state’s sports and youth affairs minister, Arvind Pandey, had confirmed that there would be nine members in the committee.

READ: Uttarakhand may have to wait for its entry to first-class cricket

“Two nominees would be there from BCCI, including one having considerable experiences in the realm of cricket administration. Besides, there would be a nominee from the government of Uttarakhand. There would be two nominees from Uttaranchal Cricket Association, two nominees from Cricket Association of Uttarakhand, one nominee from United Cricket Association and one nominee from Uttarakhand Cricket Association,” Pandey said.

On Friday, the BCCI Special General Meeting put on hold the decision taken by the CoA on Uttarakhand playing the premier domestic tournament.

Rai also confirmed to this publication that the Uttarakhand state government has agreed to give the two stadiums — Rajiv Gandhi International Stadium in Dehradun and Indira Gandhi International Cricket Stadium in Haldwani — to host domestic fixtures. Interestingly, the venue in Dehradun hosted international T20 fixtures between Afghanistan and Bangladesh.

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