MPCA, KSCA not happy with domestic knockout format

The Madhya Pradesh Cricket Association (MPCA) and the Karnataka State Cricket Association (KSCA) have objected to the knockout format for domestic competitions, especially with the way the Plate Group winner is placed.

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File Picture: The Karnataka State Cricket Association (KSCA) and the Madhya Pradesh Cricket Association (MPCA) have objected to the knockout format of the domestic competitions.   -  TWITTER|@hemangkbadani

The Madhya Pradesh Cricket Association (MPCA) and the Karnataka State Cricket Association (KSCA) have objected to the knockout format for domestic competitions, especially with the way the Plate Group winner is placed.

Sportstar understands that both the associations wrote to BCCI secretary Jay Shah after the conclusion of the Syed Mushtaq Ali Trophy league stage, expressing their grievances. Arjun Tendulkar, Prithvi Shaw named among Mumbai probables for Vijay Hazare Trophy

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“To maintain the competitiveness of knockout rounds, we have suggested that either the Plate teams should not be allowed to participate in the knockouts or the Board should do away with the Plate/ Elite system and accommodate the Plate teams along with other teams,” Rohit Pandit, MPCA chief administrative officer, told Sportstar on Sunday. Madhya Pradesh narrowly missed out on qualifying for the knockouts (on net run rate).

Karnataka, on the other hand, has stressed on the need for the Elite league teams to be ranked higher than Plate teams. “In the Mushtaq Ali knockouts draw, Plate Group winner was placed higher whereas the two teams from Elite who qualified at No. 2 from their respective groups were placed at No. 7 and 8,” a KSCA official said, preferring anonymity. Karnataka, after qualifying seventh best among Elite Group teams, ended up drawing leader Punjab in the first quarterfinal and lost.

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It will be interesting to see if the BCCI pays heed to its affiliates’ suggestions while finalising the format for the Vijay Hazare Trophy.

Unlike in the past, the BCCI had not shared the knockouts draw with the teams at the start of the Mushtaq Ali Trophy. The teams in the Plate Group, with the addition of 10 new teams in the last couple of years, have been far from competitive against the domestic regulars.

Even after the conclusion of last year’s Ranji Trophy, some of the domestic stalwarts had pointed to the need to avoid diluting the Ranji Trophy knockouts by letting a team from the Plate Group feature in the quarterfinals.

(With inputs from N. Sudarshan in Bengaluru)

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