The Indian domestic season ended with the conclusion of the women's U-23 Challenger Trophy final in Ranchi. While the board sent out a release to mark many firsts in a season which saw as many as 2024 matches being played involving 37 teams, senior Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) officials rued the lack of professionalism in the organisation of the mega domestic season.
Speaking to IANS, a senior BCCI official talked about how the new team of professionals under GM Cricket Operations Saba Karim failed to rise to the challenges and left a lot to be desired for as regular complaints came in with regards to matters such as induction of umpires, flouting of eligibility rules as well as ignoring the recommendations of former technical committee head Sourav Ganguly.
"All this talk of the mega domestic season cannot hide the fact that the BCCI staff made a hash of it. They changed eligibility rules in the middle of the season as special allowances were made apparently for a couple of individuals, ignored the recommendations of the Ganguly-led technical committee, inducted fresh umpires in a questionable manner, derailed the process of the umpire assessment program, missed providing video cameras at various grounds to record footage thereby missing valuable content, and many more," the official pointed.
Eligibility criterion for players was also a major concern this season as nine new teams were inducted into the domestic structure as per the recommendation of the Lodha panel and it also saw the board giving the new teams permission to field cricketers from other states provided they fulfilled eligibility criteria. But that too was a mess as many signings were reported to be illegal.
"The fact that you had the majority of a playing XI of a team facing action because eligibility rules were flouted blatantly, is a blot that will forever remain in the BCCI's history as one of the most shameful incidents of abuse of power. The administration would be well advised to not make such a song and dance about this season," another official added.