What BCCI contract snub means for Ishan Kishan and Shreyas Iyer?

Both Head Coach Dravid and the BCCI had instructed Ishan to take part in domestic competitions in order to be considered for the national team.

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The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) made headlines on Wednesday with the release of their annual contract list, which notably excluded Ishan Kishan and Shreyas Iyer.

This decision came as a surprise to many, as both players were left out entirely. The move follows their refusal to play for their domestic teams, despite BCCI Secretary Jay Shah's clear directive for all contracted players to participate in domestic cricket. This directive was communicated in a strongly worded letter, as reported by the Indian Express.

Ishan Kishan, who was expected to represent Jharkhand in the Ranji Trophy, cited mental fatigue as the reason for his decision to opt out of the match. Despite being recognized as a talented and important member of the Indian squad, Kishan expressed dissatisfaction with constantly being benched in the national team.

Both Head Coach Dravid and the BCCI had instructed Ishan to take part in domestic competitions in order to be considered for the national team. His refusal to comply with this directive ultimately led to his exclusion from the annual contracts list.

According to the Indian Express, Shreyas Iyer attributed his absence from Ranji matches for Mumbai to back and groin pain. However, the BCCI's medical team, led by Nitin Patel, found no fitness issues. Despite his strong performance in the recent ODI World Cup, Iyer was surprisingly left out of the central contracts, sending a clear message that skipping domestic cricket would not be tolerated.

This decision comes at a crucial time for both Iyer and Ishan Kishan, who were key players in India's plans, especially in white-ball cricket. Their exclusion from the contracts suggests that they may struggle to be selected for upcoming international series, including the T20I World Cup.

Even if Iyer and Kishan return to the team later this year and meet the minimum match requirements, they will not be eligible for a contract. Instead, they will only receive match fees based on the format. This lack of national contracts also means they lose access to facilities like the National Cricket Academy, limiting their ability to recover from injuries or improve their skills.

Without the support of national contracts, players like Iyer and Kishan will now have to work with their state units to access NCA facilities.

Despite not being included in the BCCI central contract list, Shreyas Iyer and Ishan Kishan continue to play crucial roles for their Indian Premier League franchises, as reported by the Indian Express.

The decision by their teams to retain them before the auction highlights their significance in the teams' strategies. Although both players are expected to take part in the IPL, it is clear that they will only be eligible for national selection if they also participate in domestic cricket.

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