The Board of Control for Cricket in India announced annual contracts for the women’s team cricketers on Wednesday and it once again highlighted the gap in pay scale with their male counterparts.

The Grade A which offers an annual retainer fees of Rs 50 lakh once again comprised of three all-format players – Twenty20 skipper Harmanpreet Kaur, her deputy Smriti Mandhana and leg break bowler Poonam Yadav.

The Grade B has an annual retainer fee of Rs 30 lakh and veterans such as Jhulan Goswami, Mithali Raj and Deepti Sharma are among 10 players in this bracket, with Shafali Verma and Punam Raut earning a promotion from last time around.

The men’s contracts are divided into four categories. While the retainers have been the same from the last cycle, the women’s contracts witnessed a reduction in the total number of players who are part of the list. The highest grade for women’s cricketers has a retainer of Rs 50 lakh while the lowest grade for men’s cricketers is worth Rs 1 crore.

BCCI contracts for men: Kohli, Rohit, Bumrah remain in top bracket; Chahal, Kuldeep moved to grade C

BCCI contracts for women: Shafali Verma moves up to Grade B, number of contracted cricketers slashed

From the archive: Why are India’s women cricketers afraid of asking for more?

BCCI annual contracts

 Period  Grade A+ Grade A  Grade B Grade C
Indian women's team Oct 2020 to Sept 2021 N/A Rs 50 lakh Rs 30 lakh Rs 10 lakh
Indian men's team Oct 2020 to Sept 2021 Rs 7 crore Rs 5 crore Rs 3 crore Rs 1 crore

No of cricketers in each grade of BCCI contract

# in A # in B # in C Total
Sep 2020-Oct 2021 Men 10 5 10 28
Sep 2020-Oct 2021 Women 3 10 6 19
Oct 2019-Sep 2020 Men 11 5 8 27
Oct 2019-Sep 2020 Women 3 8 11 22

Comparison of contract retainers by BCCI

Grade A+ Grade A Grade B Grade c Total money Average per cricketer
Sep 2020-Oct 2021 Men 210000000 500000000 150000000 100000000 960000000 34285714
Sep 2020-Oct 2021 Women 0 15000000 30000000 6000000 51000000 2684211
Oct 2019-Sep 2020 Men 210000000 550000000 150000000 80000000 990000000 36666667
Oct 2019-Sep 2020 Women 0 15000000 24000000 11000000 50000000 2272727
All numbers in Rs (Representing total money spent by the Board in each grade)

Here are some reactions to the announcement that once again highlighted the chasm between what the BCCI pays it’s annually contracted cricketers.