With less pay and internal conflicts, cricket selectors' post sees less takers

New Indian Express

New Indian Express

Author 2019-09-24 11:51:00

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CHENNAI: As the Committee of Administrators (CoA) sets the ball rolling for the BCCI’s annual general meeting, the search has begun for new set of selectors across all age groups and categories. It is reliably learnt that the BCCI has already reached out to a few candidates, checking on his/her availability.

But the remuneration being far less than what some of th­o­se involved in Indian cricket get is appearing to be a roadblock. Many players are un­­­­­­­­­de­­rstood to have turned do­wn the offer to become selectors.

Currently, the men’s chairman of selector receives Rs 1 cr­ore per annum, while his four colleagues receive Rs 90 lakh ea­ch. The chief junior selector ge­ts Rs 65 lakh, with other four po­cketing Rs 60 lakh. The women’s selectors are paid Rs 25 lakh with the chief selector getting Rs 30 lakh.

These used to be honorary posts before the BCCI started paying the selectors in 2008. But even then, the remuneration they receive is less when compared to the Indian team’s support staff. For instance, head coach Ravi Shastri through his new contract receives aro­und Rs 10 crore. The rest of the coaching staff get more than Rs 2.5 crore.

Even though the BCCI a year ago increased the pay of selectors, it remains a less sought after job for top former cricketers, who earn more by doing commentary. Ever since the MSK Prasad-led panel was appointed in 2016, critics often pointed out that they don’t have enough international experience.

For example, Prasad is the most experienced of the current committee, having played six Tests and 17 ODIs. Soon after India’s World Cup exit, Sunil Gavaskar had called the selectors ‘lame duck’ and suggested that the BCCI should appoint a new panel which will not get bullied.

While there is a school of thought in the BCCI that believes inexperience doesn’t count as the inability as the revised constitution clearly spells out the criteria, the board is trying to rope in at least one high-profile former cricketer who has experience with an understanding of modern methods.

So far, the BCCI is yet to put out any advertisement, as the responsibility of appointing the selectors now lies with the Cricket Advisory Committee to be formed during the Oct­o­ber 22 AGM. While there is time, the groundwork has alre­ady been started with potential candidates being approached.

A couple of big names have already been spoken to, but turned down the invitation. As of now, they are understood to be in negotiations. What is making it complicated is most of the experienced cricketers have lucrative media contracts that they are unwilling to forgo. With the conflict of interest rule in picture, some recently retired players are not keen to be part of the committee.


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