Vijay Hazare Trophy, the premier Inter-state one-day tournament in India, will kick start on Tuesday when as many 24 teams will be in action across 12 matches at the same time. The number of teams participating in this competition raises to 38 as this domestic season witnesses the arrival of the Chandigarh team. The tally of matches including the knockout matches raises to 169 from 160 with the entry of Chandigarh. They will be one of the ten sides to be part of the Plate Group.
Assam is the only oldest team to be part of this group as they were demoted and Bihar got a promotion. Bihar moves to Elite Group C which also has ten teams. They topped the Plate group by winning all the seven completed matches. The Elite Group A and Elite Group B will involve nine teams apiece. Mumbai won the previous edition of the tournament by defeating Delhi. It brought an end to Mumbai’s 12-year drought without a One-Day tournament in their cabinet.
Each team will face the remaining teams in their respective groups. The top two teams from Group A and Group B will directly qualify to the quarter-finals. The team at No.5 on combining these two Group tables will be the 5th entrant to the knockouts. The sides that end up in top two from Elite Group C and the table-topper of the Plate Group will fill the remaining three places. All the knockout matches will be played in the same city which will be announced towards the end of the tournament.
The introduction of affiliate members gave a chance to some of the domestic cricketers in top teams flee away. They end up playing as guest cricketers in those teams. Their experiences could be helpful to the players who are just one year the domestic system and yet to face the big sides. Nagaland will be one of the benefited sides as Stuart Binny and Maharashtra’s Shrikant Mundhe join them. Vinay Kumar ends his long relation with Karnataka and joins Puducherry.
Vinay decided to move out as he did not want to block any upcoming pacers’ way. Another Karnataka player, CM Gautam, moved to Goa. Unmukt Chand will get a chance to captain Uttarakhand as he couldn’t be regularly part of the Delhi squad. Another big move was of Robin Uthappa who will now represent Kerala. The keeper-batsman played for Saurashtra in the previous two seasons after moving out of Karnataka.
The Vijay Hazare Trophy will be broadcasted by the Star Sports and live streaming on Hotstar. However, only knockouts will be in telecasted and group stage is likely to not have any coverage like in the previous seasons.
Groups and Squads:
Elite Group A in Bengaluru from September 24 to October 13: (Mumbai, Saurashtra, Andhra, Chhattisgarh, Hyderabad, Karnataka, Jharkhand, Goa, Kerala)
Elite Group B in Vadodara from September 24 to October 13: (Delhi, Vidarbha, Maharashtra, Himachal Pradesh, Baroda, Odisha, Uttar Pradesh, Haryana, Punjab)
Elite Group C in Jaipur from September 24 to October 16: (Gujarat, Bengal, Tamil Nadu, Rajasthan, Jammu & Kashmir, Tripura, Madhya Pradesh, Railways, Bihar, Services)
Plate in Dehradun from September 24 to October 16: (Assam, Manipur, Uttarakhand, Meghalaya, Puducherry, Arunachal Pradesh, Sikkim, Mizoram, Nagaland, Chandigarh)
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