Former India captain and current Karnataka State Cricket Association (KSCA) president Anil Kumble has suggested BCCI to find ways to include two or three warm-up first class games in the run-up to the opening Test against hosts Australia when India visit Down Under later this year.
Kumble's suggestion came on Monday following widespread criticism of the schedule prepared for the team in the ongoing Test series against England that, experts feel, has led to the Indian squad's disastrous outing which has seen it squandering the series by trailing the hosts 0-3 with one match left.
The Indian squad, led by Mahendra Singh Dhoni, played a lone first class game against Somerset during the ongoing tour of England before sliding to massive defeats in the first three Tests to also lose its No. 1 Test ranking which it had held on to for more than a year-and-a-half.
At today's Working Committee meeting of the BCCI here, Kumble's suggestion to the Board to pencil in two more first class games to the one already scheduled ahead of the opening Boxing Day (Dec 26) Test at Melbourne "was accepted", sources said.
"Kumble said that if only one first-class game is fixed only 11 players will be able to play in it and he wanted all 16 touring members to have a competitive game before the start of the Test series by having more games. His suggestion has been accepted," they said.
The sources conceded it will be a tricky task for the Board to try and add one more first-class game in the tune-up to the tour as there was hardly any time gap between the conclusion of the home ODI series against the West Indies and the departure of the team to Australia.