New Delhi, March 22 (IANS) Test stars Ravindra Jadeja, Cheteshwar Pujara and Murali Vijay were on Wednesday rewarded with Grade A category of the BCCI annual contracts, the amount of which has been doubled to Rs two crore from this season while middle order batsman Suresh Raina failed to figure in the list.
The trio joins Virat Kohli, Mahendra Singh Dhoni, Ravichandran Ashwin and Ajinkya Rahane in the top category of the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) contracts. Former skipper Dhoni has retained his place in Grade A despite retiring from Test cricket.
All-rounder Jadeja, who was earlier in Grade C was promoted to Grade A on the back of his sterling performances with the ball in the ongoing home season.
The players getting the Grade B category of contracts include Rohit Sharma, Lokesh Rahul, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Mohammed Shami, Ishant Sharma, Umesh Yadav, Wriddhiman Saha, Jasprit Bumrah and Yuvraj Singh.
Raina, who was demoted to Grade B in the previous year, has been omitted this time around. Veteran off-spinner Harbhajan Singh, who made a comeback into Grade C last season, was the other cricketer to be left out this year.
Veteran Yuvraj Singh, however made a comeback and was included in Grade B while opener Rahul and stumper Saha were promoted.
Grade C witnessed a few new faces in Manish Pandey, Karun Nair, Hardik Pandya, Kedar Jadhav, Yuzvendra Chahal, Jayant Yadav, Mandeep Singh, Shardul Thakur and Rishabh Pant. Veterans Ashish Nehra and Parthiv Patel also made a comeback to the list of contracted players while Ambati Rayudu and Amit Mishra retained their places in Grade C.
Meanwhile, opener Shikhar Dhawan was demoted to Grade C after being out of the national side for most part of the ongoing season.
The amounts were enhanced for all the categories and Grade A players will be paid Rs two crore per annum, Grade B will be paid Rs one crore per annum while Grade C will be paid Rs 50 lakh per annum, which is double the amounts paid in the earlier years.
“The match fee enhancement will be effective from October 1, 2016 onwards and Rs 15 lakh per Test, Rs 6 lakh per One-day International (ODI) and Rs 3 lakh for T20 International will be paid,” the BCCI said in a statement.
The board also handed a cheque of Rs 15 lakh to Sandhya Rajesh Sawant, wife of former Under-19 team trainer Rajesh Sawant, who passed away during the U-19 team’s series against England, earlier this year.