Former Test cricketers welcome one-time payment

Mumbai: Former Test cricketers Chandu Borde and Bapu Nadkarni on Saturday welcomed the Cricket Board`s decision to make a one-time payment from the proceeds of the cash-rich Indian Premier League to the players who had retired prior to 2003-04.

As per the decision of the BCCI`s all-powerful working committee that met in Chennai today, a cricketer who had represented the country even in one Test match prior to 1970, would be rewarded with Rs 35 lakh by the Board, which is to distribute Rs 70 crore from the IPL proceeds to 160 ex-players.

"Good Lord, it`s fantastic," was the reaction from former Test middle order mainstay Chandu Borde who led India in one Test when regular skipper Mansur Ali Khan Pataudi was injured and unavailable to play on the 1967-68 tour of Australia.

The Pune-based Borde, who had played in 55 Tests between 1958 and 1969, stands to gain Rs 75 lakh, as per the BCCI`s decision.

Borde`s former teammate and ex-all rounder Bapu Nadkarni said he had been expecting this sort of an announcement by the Board for some time now, having pursued the matter with other former cricketers and former BCCI chief Sharad Pawar.

"To be frank, we have been talking this up with Sharad Pawar (former BCCI president) over the last 2-3 years. He had promised us it will be done. I heard after the last meeting of the Board that something was coming," said Nadkarni who would get Rs 60 lakh, having played 41 Tests between 1955 and 1968.

"It was time we got something like this as expenses have been mounting with the price rise and medical expenses too going up. We are living on what we had saved from our jobs which, you are aware, were not high-paying in those days," said the former left arm spinner and hardy left handed batsman.

The retired cricketers have also been benefiting from the monthly gratis scheme introduced by the Board a few years ago.