Duleep Trophy 2016 Schedule Announced: D/N format & Pink ball introduced: The 2016 edition of Duleep Trophy promises to be an exciting one as it will be the first time, first class cricket will be played with pink ball under lights in India. The seasons commences on 23rd of August and final will be played on 10th September, all matches to be played at Greater Noida. The league matches will be of 4 days and final of 5 days. 3 teams namely India blue, India green and India red will be participating. All 3 are very well balanced and it is very difficult to pick pre-tournament favourites.
India Red: Abhinav Mukund, KS Bharat, Sudip Chatterjee, Gurkeerat Singh Mann , Yuvraj Singh (capt), Ankush Bains (wk), Arun Karthik, Akshay Wakhare, Kuldeep Yadav, Nathu Singh, Anureet Singh, Ishwar Pandey, Nitish Rana, M Ashwin, Abhimanyu Mithun.
India Red under the leadership of Yuvi looks a formidable team on paper. Abhinav Mukund, who has been a veteran in FC Cricket for TN will open with youngster KS Bharat. Sudip Chaterjee, Yuvraj, Gurkeerat Mann, Nitish Rana for a strong middle order. The have variety in their pace attack. Nathu Singh provides extra pace to a medium pace attack of Mithun, Ishwar and Anureet. They have some talented spinners but they are young and don”t have a lot of experience in FC even though likes of Kuldeep, M Ashwin have been decent in IPL.
India Blue: Gautam Gambhir (capt), Mayank Agarwal, Sheldon Jackson Baba Aparajith, Siddhesh Lad, Dinesh Karthik (wk), Parvez Rasool, K Monish, Krishna Das, Suryakumar Yadav, Mohit Sharma, Pankaj Singh, Shardul Thakur, Cheteshwar Pujara, Hanuma Vihari
Gautam Gambhir-led blues are a strong batting line up and a lethal pace attack but their spin resources look thin. With an experience of more than 100 tests this is by far the strongest batting line up among 3 teams. They have an extremely potent pace attack in form of Mohit Sharma, Pankaj, Shardul Thakur, Krishna Das but except Parvez Rasool there is no other experienced spinner.
India Green: Robin Uthappa, Jalaj Saxena, Ambati Rayudu, Ian Dev Singh, Rohan Prem, Suresh Raina (capt), Parthiv Patel (wk), Harbhajan Singh, Shreyas Gopal, Ashok Dinda, Sandeep Sharma, Ankit Rajpoot, Rajat Paliwal, Jasprit Bumrah, M Vijay.
A good side with all the bases covered this team looks good to lift the trophy if players step up and do the job on the field. They have a rich international experience in form of Harbhajan Singh, Robin Uthappa, Murali Vijay, skipper Suresh Raina, Parthiv Patel Ambati Rayudu and Jasprit Bumrah. Sandeep Sharma is the one to watch out for while Ian Dev Singh who was among the leading run scorers last season is a great back up if one of the big guns is not playing.
Duleep Trophy 2016-17 schedule
August 23-26 – India Red v India Green (2:00 pm Time (IST))
August 29-September 1 – India Red v India Blue (2:00 pm Time (IST))
September 4-7 – India Blue v India Green (2:00 pm Time (IST))
September 10-14 – TBD vs TBD Final (2:00 pm Time (IST))
– by Atharva Apte