New Delhi, Jan 11: Former India captain and legendary batsman Sunil Gavaskar on Saturday (January 11) called for ending the disparity between Ranji Trophy and Indian Premier League, calling the Indian domestic tournament as a 'poor cousin' of the IPL.
Gavaskar while speaking on 'The Changing Face of Indian Cricket' at the 26th Annual Lal Bahadur Shastri Memorial Lecture in New Delhi said the player's match fee in the country's premier first-class tournament must be substantially increased.
A player now gets approximately Rs 2.5 lakh per match in the Ranji Trophy, a far cry from the meagre salary the cricketers would withdraw not long ago, but still, the amount is no match to the millions the IPL stars earn.
"IPL dominates Ranji Trophy. Unless their match fees are increased substantially, it will be considered an orphan and poor cousin of Indian cricket," Gavaskar said.
"I think 26 per cent of the BCCI revenue goes to the players, out of which 13 per cent goes to the international players, 10 per cent goes to domestic cricket, 1.5 to junior, 1.5 to women's cricket. That has not really been increased over the past few years barring the Test cricketers."
Gavaskar said there is too much disparity between the earnings of a first-class cricketer and an IPL recruit.
"I am hoping new president Sourav Ganguly will look into this. The disparity that you see between IPL players, who don't always play first-class cricket, and those who play all the domestic games, about 80 days and somebody who plays 14 days of IPL.
"There is a big disparity. I am talking about the uncapped players. Hopefully, that will be narrowed down as much as possible."
On ICC's proposal to trim Test cricket to four days from five, he added: "What I think doesn't matter. It is what the current players think that matters. They should be consulted before BCCI takes a call.
When asked if Dhoni can make India's T20 World Cup squad, Gavaskar said, "Fitness is something that I can't tell you anything at all. The question that needs to be asked is of MSD himself. He has not made himself available to play for India since 10 July (9th actually).
"That is an important question. Does anybody keep himself away from playing for India for that long? That is the question and therein lies the answer," said the former India captain.
Gavaskar also delivered the lecture enlightening works of Lal Bahadur Shastriji in all capacities as a political leader that reflected a way of life in his dressing, eating and work.
"He embodied eternal universal values of humanity. He preached and lived these values. India had the unique privilege of having truly a prime minister who quintessentially represented Bharat," said the Mumbaikar.