Bengal’s not playing in Buchi Babu surprises Ganguly

Kolkata: Bengal’s decision not to play in Buchi Babu All-India Invitational three-day cricket tournament has surprised former India captain Sourav Ganguly.

The iconic Bengal cricketer, who is also the cricket development committee chairman, today said Bengal would have been better off to start their Ranji season with the tournament featuring reigning champions Mumbai.

“It should have been good to play in Buchi Babu tournament. It would have been a nice way to start the season. It would have given a good exposure to Bengal bench strength,” Ganguly told reporters on the sidelines of a promotional event here on Tuesday.

But the 38-year-old, who will feature in Bengal’s one-day scheme of things, said they should look up to the other tournaments.

“By not participating in one tournament cannot affect the performance. We should look up to the other pre-season tournaments,” he said.

As a matter of fact, Tamil Nadu Cricket Association (TNCA) has not invited Bengal to play in the pre-season tournament as Cricket Association of Bengal (CAB) has stayed away from the tournament for last three-four seasons.

“They have not participated in the tournament for last-three four seasons, so we have not invited them,” TNCA secretary K S Viswanthan said.

CAB is yet to announce their probables for 2010-11, even as defending Ranji champions Mumbai have named Wasim Jaffer to lead a provisional squad featuring Sachin Tendulkar and Zaheer Khan.

“Our season ends very late - in June and after that it takes time to begin the season. That’s the reason we could not be part of Buchi Babu (in last few years),” CAB joint secretary Biswarup Dey said.

CAB will have their working committee meeting on August 17 and it is very unlikely for them to announce captain and probables before the meeting.

The Bengal association has chosen W V Raman as coach for the coming season and they will start their season after the former India opener takes charge on September 1.

Bengal will play in Moin-ud-Dowla Gold Cup and J P Atre tournaments ahead of Ranji Trophy.

Buchi Babu All India Invitation cricket tournament will be played in Chennai from August 17-30.


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