Syed Mushtaq Ali Trophy: Ahmedabad to host final

The Sardar Patel Stadium in Ahmedabad will host the knockout stage and the final of the Syed Mushtaq Ali Trophy.

A view of the Sardar Patel Stadium in Motera, Ahmedabad. - VIJAY SONEJI

The Sardar Patel Stadium in Ahmedabad will host the knockout stage and the final of the Syed Mushtaq Ali Trophy.

In a letter to the State bodies on Thursday which Sportstar has accessed, BCCI secretary Jay Shah has stated that the group stage of the tournament - which begins on January 10, next year - will be played across six venues - Mumbai, Kolkata, Vadodara, Chennai, Bengaluru and Indore.

While Chennai will host the plate teams, Bengaluru will host Elite ‘A’ teams, while Kolkata will host the Elite ‘B’ group teams. The other three venues - Vadodara, Indore and Mumbai - will host the Elite ‘C’, ‘D’, ‘E ’teams respectively.

While the plate group has eight teams, the elite groups have been divided with six teams in each category.

The teams will enter their respective bubbles on January 2 and before the tournament begins, they will undergo three COVID tests.

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With the group stage getting over on January 19, the qualified teams will travel to Ahmedabad the next day, where there will be further tests before the teams enter the bubble.

This will be the first-ever tournament at the Motera ever since its renovation. The stadium will host a couple of Tests and five T20Is against in February-March and before that this tournament will give the Board and the Gujarat Cricket Association a fair idea about where things stand. While the process of preparing the wickets have already begun, the GCA officials are confident of getting everything in place.

 

While there were initial doubts over Mumbai being the venue as the Maharashtra government is yet to give permission. But then the BCCI and the affiliated unit are confident that the city will be able to host the group league matches.

Officials from the State associations this publication spoke to confirmed that the efforts of putting up the bio-bubble have already started. "We are in regular coordination with the Board and the medical units and are following all the instructions. We will ensure things fall in place," a State association chief said, even though he admitted that it was a race against time.

Most of the teams have already started their preparatory camps, while the others are about to start it in a day or two. "We have started the camp keeping all the safety protocols in mind. The tests are being done regularly and all the government norms are being followed," Saurashtra Cricket Association chief Jaydev Shah said. The defending champion Saurashtra started its camp a few days ago in Rajkot.

Elite A: Bengaluru
Teams: Jammu & Kashmir, Karnataka, Punjab, Uttar Pradesh, Railways and Tripura

Elite B: Kolkata
Teams: Odisha, Bengal, Jharkhand, Tamil Nadu, Assam and Hyderabad

Elite C: Vadodara
Teams: Gujarat, Maharashtra, Chattisgarh, Himachal Pradesh, Baroda and Uttarakhand

Elite D: Indore
Teams: Services, Saurashtra, Vidarbha, Rajasthan, Madhya Pradesh and Goa

Elite E: Mumbai
Teams: Haryana, Andhra, Delhi, Mumbai, Kerala and Puducherry

Plate: Chennai
Teams: Chandigarh, Meghalaya, Bihar, Nagaland, Manipur, Mizoram, Sikkim and Arunachal Pradesh

Ahmedabad (starting from January 26): Quarterfinals, semifinals, final 

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