All the matches in the upcoming Ranji Trophy cricket tournament will be played in neutral venues, according to the fixture of the Domestic tournaments announced by the BCCI on Friday.
The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) today (Friday) announced the fixtures for the Domestic tournaments for senior, junior and women to be played in 2016-17 season.
BCCI's technical committee, headed by Sourav Ganguly, had recommended to hold the matches of its premier domestic championship at neutral venues in May this year to make it more competitive.
Neutral venues will take away any home advantage as it will deny the home teams an opportunity to make tailor-made pitches according to their strengths.
According to the fixture, the 83rd edition of the Ranji Trophy will get underway on October 6 with Chhattisgarh making their first-class debut against Tripura in Ranchi. They are the 10th team in Group C.
Group A and Group B will have nine teams each in the 28-team event. Three teams from each of Group A and B and two sides from Group C will reach the quarterfinals to be held from December 17-21.
The semifinals will be held from December 27-31 and the final will be played between January 7 and 11.
The one-day competitions - Vijay Hazare Trophy (50-overs) and the newly-proposed inter-zonal T20 tournament for the Syed Mushtaq Ali Trophy - will be played after the completion of the Ranji Trophy.
Ranji Trophy 2016-17 groups:
Group A: Mumbai, Baroda, Punjab, Madhya Pradesh, Bengal, Gujarat,Tamil Nadu, Railways, Uttar Pradesh
Group B: Saurashtra, Odisha, Delhi, Maharashtra, Assam, Vidarbha, Karnataka, Rajasthan, Jharkhand.
Group C: Hyderabad, Haryana,Kerala, Himachal Pradesh, Tripura, Services, Goa, J&K, Andhra, Chhattisgarh.