The Board of Control for Cricket in India is all set to organise a curtailed Ranji Trophy tournament from next month, in possibly the same six bio-bubbles created for the ongoing Syed Mushtaq Ali Trophy.

A decision on this will be taken during the BCCI Apex Council Meeting on January 17, scheduled to be held virtually.

There are seven items on the agenda and right at the top of the list is domestic cricket, which also includes junior and women’s categories.

“As of now, there is 90% chance that Ranji Trophy will start in February and we will have the same six bio-bubbles created for the Syed Mushtaq Ali Trophy. The groupings will also be same – five groups of six teams each and one group of eight teams,” a senior BCCI source told PTI on conditions of anonymity.

The logic behind having the same bio-bubbles is that it’s already set and will be more convenient for operational purposes.

“It could well happen that the league stage of the Ranji Trophy will be held before the IPL and then the knockouts, quarters, semifinals and final held after the T20 league so that best teams don’t lose out on best players. It’s up for discussion. The women’s national tournament will be on and all age-group tournament will be held,” the source said.

Other Items on agenda

ICC FTP Cycle 2023-2031

The new ICC FTP Cycle for the period 2023-2031 might see the BCCI asking a bigger IPL window for the 10-team tournament that is set to start from next year.

The IPL will require a minimum of two-month window and the other boards need to agree to release their players for the better part of the tournament.

It is expected that India will be playing a lot more bilateral series with more emphasis on T20 and Test cricket with lesser number of ODIs. There has been a constant debate on if bilateral ODIs are losing their context.

Tax exemption

The ICC tax related issue will also come up for discussion and it is already decided that India will ask the global body to deduct from its annual revenue of $490 million in case they don’t get exemption from the central government on existing tax laws. The council will be intimated as to what the government’s stance is.

Discussion of NCA Project

The work and related progress of the under-construction new National Cricket Academy in Bengaluru will come up for discussion along with hiring of personnel at the NCA as well as BCCI headquarters in Mumbai.

Decision on Bihar Cricket Association

The Bihar Cricket Association is currently an administrative mess following the recent controversy over warring factions naming two separate teams for Syed Mushtaq Ali Trophy. There could be a special committee that will be formed to oversee fair and transparent selection in all state teams.

Items (As per listed in agenda)

1. Confirmation of the minutes of the 4th and 5th Apex Council Meetings.

2. Discussion on Domestic Season 2020-21

3. Discussion on Tax solution for ICC T20 Men’s Cricket World Cup.

4. Discussion on the NCA project.

5. Hiring of personnel for NCA and for BCCI headquarters at Mumbai.

6 Discussion on matters related to ICC’’s 2023 - 2031 cycle.

7. Update on Bihar Cricket Association 8 To consider any other business which the Chairman may consider necessary to be included in the Agenda.