With eye on Mushtaq Ali meet, VCA likely to start T20 league | Cricket News

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NAGPUR: The Vidarbha Cricket Association (VCA) is gearing up for the domestic season’s curtain raiser — the Syed Mushtaq Ali T20 Trophy.
Post a severe drubbing in the last season, VCA is leaving no stone unturned in approaching this event with better preparation.
After conducting the off-season camp for a couple of months, VCA is now planning to hold the Guzder League T20 meet from next week. “We are planning to start the league tentatively between August 17 and 19,” said a VCA official.
The tournament would start once the ongoing under-19 and under-16 trial matches are over. The VCA has even decided to allow only vaccinated umpires to officiate in the matches. Players are yet to get similar instructions.
Last year, after the team lost all its group stage matches, Pritam Gandhe was appointed as coach just a couple of days before the league. There were many newcomers in the squad.
Seasoned campaigner Faiz Fazal did not play due to a niggle. His absence was felt as Vidarbha’s batting was found wanting.
Gandhe has spent a few months with the boys and is employing a new approach. Players have been playing matches at regular intervals in the off season, courtesy Gandhe. There is a difference in the approach since Gandhe replaced Trevor Gonsalves.
The former Vidarbha skipper has been regularly putting the players either through match simulations or making them play practice matches at the Kalamna ground.
“The coach’s aim is to ensure that players get to play more matches before the national T20 tournament begins. In a format like T20, the experience of playing more T20s makes a huge difference,” the source added.
VCA had planned the Guzder T20s last month but the weather played spoilsport from the very start of the tournament. This time around, all the stakeholders are hoping that the league does not get hit by the rains.
Sixty under-16 players shortlisted: After a marathon process of shortlisting 90 players from Vidarbha, the junior selectors have again formed four teams comprising 15 players each. The teams are playing against each other and after the last game on Saturday, a list of 25-30 probables will be finalized.



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