New Delhi, Feb 24 (PTI): With focus on the 2023 ODI World Cup at home, ‘shadow tours’ with the India A squad will have to wait till the year-end tour of South Africa.
The concept of shadow tour started once Rahul Dravid took over as the NCA head. The shadow tour is one where an India A side travels to the same country where the senior Test team is due to travel subsequently.
As recently as December last year, the India A team visited Bangladesh right before the Test team was scheduled to play two games.
“This year the focus apart from WTC final will be on ODIs till the World Cup. Hence, the A team tours for red ball games might only happen after November.
“In December-January, India is going to South Africa for a full-length Test tour during next WTC cycle. There is a high chance India A shadow tour might resume before that,” a BCCI source told PTI on conditions of anonymity.
Post Border-Gavaskar trophy and before the ODI World Cup, Indian team will play only three Test matches, which includes a possible WTC final at the Oval and then two Tests in the West Indies in July-August for the next WTC cycle.
Since WTC final is a one-off game in England, one doesn’t need a shadow tour for that and also it will be held right after the IPL.
It is understood that for the West Indies series, there is little chance of having a shadow tour.
Due to COVID-19, there were a lot of domestic players who lost precious years during their transition from age group cricket and as a novel gesture, BCCI had changed the age-group CK Nayudu Trophy from U-23 to U-25 to compensate all those who were losing an opportunity because of 2020-21 season being badly affected.
However, it is understood that from next season, CK Nayudu Trophy will revert back to its original U-23 format, which remains a bridge between U-19 and senior team.
“Since normalcy is back and we had a full-fledged domestic season this year, the BCCI might be going back to U-23 format from next season,” a senior state unit official in the know of things, said.