The players’ by choice, popularly known as players’ draft, for the upcoming BCL was held Saturday at BCB media complex at Mirpur Sher-e-Bangla National Cricket Stadium in Dhaka
Franchise-based first-class cricket tournament, the Bangladesh Cricket League has also been introduced with the players’ by choice system.
The tournament is the third in the Bangladesh domestic cricket circuit after the Bangladesh Premier League T20 and the Dhaka Premier Division Cricket League to get introduced with the system.
The players’ by choice, popularly known as players’ draft, for the upcoming BCL was held Saturday at BCB media complex at Mirpur Sher-e-Bangla National Cricket Stadium in Dhaka.
The four-team tournament with the participation of 80 cricketers will commence Wednesday.
The sudden decision to have a players’ draft was a point of discussion among the four franchises of the first-class tournament.
But the BCB tournament committee refrained from offering an explanation, and the draft was held behind closed doors at the media dining hall without any public announcement.
The franchisees have however, positively agreed with the BCB’s decision to have a players’ draft.
Almost all representatives of the franchises echoed similar sentiment – the draft levels the strength of the teams.
“I am seeing it as a positive. Only the best of the players will get to play in this competition and the weak teams get to bag their desired players. A team with a strong squad are found to have benched many good cricketers but now all of them will get to play matches,” said Walton Central Zone coach Jafrul Ehsan.
Meanwhile, BCB North Zone coach Khaled Mashud informed that the decision has come from the tournament committee of the board, and that they have agreed to it as it will balance the teams.
“All teams are balanced this way. The fact is majority of the cricketers come from South and North Zones, and most of them are representing at the national level. So this makes South and North Zone perform well in the tournament, but they also lose strength when the players get called for national duty,” said Mashud.
“For this reason, the BCB tournament committee decided to have the players’ draft, and make the tournament competitive and bring balance between the teams,” the former Bangladesh captain explained.
The eight National Cricket League teams have formed the four teams in the BCL.
Dhaka Metropolis and Dhaka have formed the Central Zone, while Barisal and Khulna have drawn up the Prime Bank South Zone.
North Zone are formed with Rangpur and Rajshahi while Sylhet and Chittagong drafted Islami Bank East Zone.
Each side have been able to retain six players from the last season of the competition, while the remaining players, picked up in the draft, formed the respective 20-member squads.