Middle-order batsman Yuvraj Singh [ Images ] returned to the top tier of BCCI's contracted cricketers, while Ishant Sharma [ Images ] and Virat Kohli [ Images ] were promoted to Grade A in the new list, announced on Saturday.
Captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni [ Images ], Sachin Tendulkar [ Images ], Gautam Gambhir [ Images ], Virender Sehwag [ Images ], Rahul Dravid [ Images ], VVS Laxman [ Images ], Suresh Raina [ Images ], Harbhajan Singh [ Images ] and Zaheer Khan [ Images ] retained their places in Grade A, which now has 12 players instead of nine.
The yearly contract amount, which was decided at the working committee meeting, was unchanged, at Rs one crore for Grade A, 50 lakh for Grade B and 25 lakh for Grade C.
The BCCI also increased the number of contracted players from the previous year's 24 to 36, with the addition of 11 new players in Grade C.
Yuvraj, who was named in the Indian squad for the first Test against the West Indies [ Images ] after recovering from injury, returned to the top tier after a year. He was demoted to Grade B last year.
Despite a listless show on India's [ Images ] full tour of England [ Images ] this summer, which led to his axing from the home ODI series against England and the first Test squad against the West Indies, off-spinner Harbhajan Singh retained his place in Grade A.
Young batsman Suresh Raina, who was dropped from the first Test squad against the West Indies, was also retained in the top tier.
Ishant Sharma was rewarded for his decent show on the England tour while Kohli also got the nod for his impressive show in the ODI series in England and at home though he flopped in the Test series in the West Indies.
Pacer Praveen Kumar [ Images ] and Pragyan Ojha [ Images ] retained their places in the five-player Grade B category while Ravichandran Ashwin, Rohit Sharma [ Images ] and Ravindra Jadeja [ Images ] were promoted from Grade C.
Ajinkya Rahane [ Images ], Munaf Patel [ Images ], Shikhar Dhawan [ Images ], Wriddhiman Saha, Parthiv Patel [ Images ], S Badrinath, Manoj Tiwary, Piyush Chawla [ Images ], Dinesh Karthik [ Images ], Jaydev Unadkat [ Images ], Umesh Yadav and Varun Aaron are the other players in Grade C, which has 19 players, an increase of 11 from last year.
Grade A: Sachin Tendulkar, Rahul Dravid, Gautam Gambhir, Virender Sehwag, M S Dhoni, VVS Laxman, Suresh Raina, Harbhajan Singh, Zaheer Khan, Yuvraj Singh, Ishant Sharma, Virat Kohli.
Grade B: Praveen Kumar, Pragyan Ojha, Ravichandran Ashwin, Rohit Sharma, Ravindra Jadeja.
Grade C: Rs 25 lakhs: S Sreesanth, Amit Mishra, Cheteshwar Pujara, Abhimanyu Mithun, Vinay Kumar, Ajinkya Rahane, Munaf Patel, Murali Vijay, Shikhar Dhawan, Wriddhiman Saha, Parthiv Patel, S Badrinath, Manoj Tiwary, Piyush Chawla, Dinesh Karthik, Jaydev Unadkat, Umesh Yadav, Rahul Sharma, Varun Aaron, Abhinav Mukund.