Sunil Gavaskar says the Ranji Trophy has been “devalued” due to India’s best talent being out of the country.
The India cricket great has questioned the need for India’s A team to also be in New Zealand at the same time as the senior side.
He believes having both sides out of the country has a detrimental effect on the national championship, something you wouldn't see during the IPL.
“Burnout is a word that was bandied about quite a lot at the start of the century but as soon as the IPL took off nobody, especially the so-called protector of cricketers’ rights FICA (Federation of International Cricketers’ Associations) has uttered the word again.
“That the national championship doesn’t mean much has been clear for a few years now that the IPL is here. It’s been emphasized once again by the way the Ranji Trophy has been devalued with the best talent out of the country,” Gavaskar said in his column for Mid-day.
India’s senior side currently leads the T20I series with New Zealand 2-0 after Sunday’s seven-wicket win in Auckland.
The third T20 takes place in Hamilton on Wednesday. India are 1.47 (7/15) favourites with 10Cric to continue their dominance.
New Zealand are available at 2.35 (27/20) with the same firm to hit back at Seddon Park.
New Zealand tour leaves Ranji squads below strength
The amount of top talent currently playing outside of India at a time when the Ranji trophy is in full swing is a major concern for Gavaskar
He added: “One can understand the national team being out as it’s a bilateral commitment in line with the ICC FTP but to have the India A team also out touring at the same time means that most Ranji Trophy teams are well below strength.
“There is the ICC under-19 World Cup going on too, so a host of promising youngsters who bring in excitement and fresh energy and outlook are not playing the national championship at a time when their state teams need them to qualify for the knockouts.
“Look at the programme of the ‘A’ teams of other countries and you will find that they tour overseas only when their domestic season is not on. How come there is no ‘A’ tour or under-19 tour during the two months of the IPL?
“I may be old fashioned in thinking Indian cricket is a sum of club, schools, college junior cricket, corporate cricket along with first-class cricket of course. There are also the fans, the media, the corporate sponsors who have made Indian cricket what it is.
“It is the solemn duty of the administrators to nurture all this for the Indian national team to continue to be the magnificent team it is today and always.”