The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) has released the annual list of centrally recruited players for the India (Senior Women) team, one month after the announcement of the annual core contracts for the Indian men’s team.
The new contracts announced by BCCI will cover the period from October 2020 to September 2021. The current roster has 19 players, three less than the 22 from the previous year. The contracts have been classified into three categories, namely Grade A, B and C. Players in the Grade A category will earn Rs 50 Lakh, followed by Rs 30 Lakh in Grade B and Rs 10 Lakh in Grade C.
While there have been some changes to the contracts, the top grade remained unchanged with Indian T20 captain Harmanpreet Kaur, vice captain Smriti Mandhana and spinner Poonam Yadav maintaining their pay grade. Promising teenager Shafali Verma has made it to Grade B from Grade C this year, along with her compatriots Punam Raut and Rajeshwari Gayakwad. Varma received the first contract last year. Meanwhile, the likes of Veda Krishnamurthy, Ekta Bisht, Anuja Patil and D Hemalatha are not included in this list.
There is still a large disparity between the terms of the contract for men’s cricket and women’s cricket. BCCI is receiving criticism after the terms of the recent contract were revealed, as President Sourav Ganguly had previously insisted that the board will seek to improve women’s cricket in the country.
Meanwhile, the Indian women’s team has started arriving in Mumbai for its 14-day quarantine before the England tour. They will play one test match, three ODI and three T20I during this tour. Some players have received summons for their international duty, and Shafali Verma received his first summons for ODI and test teams.
Indian Women’s Team Annual Contracts 2020-21
Grade A contracts: Harmanpreet Kaur, Smriti Mandhana and Poonam Yadav
Grade B contracts: Mithali Raj, Jhulan Goswami, Deepti Sharma, Punam Raut, Rajeshwari Gayakwad, Shafali Verma, Radha Yadav, Shikha Pandey, Taniya Bhatia, and Jemimah Rodrigues.
Grade C contracts: Mansi Joshi, Arundhati Reddy, Pooja Vastrakar, Harleen Deol, Priya Punia, and Richa Ghosh.