The First Class Cricket Championship – The Ranji Trophy
Ranji Trophy is the domestic first-class cricket championship in India. The championship trophy is played between teams representing regional cricket associations. The competition is currently played between 38 teams. The Ranji Trophy competition is named after former Indian cricketer Ranjitsinhji or ‘Ranji’. Mumbai has won this competition the most no of times (41 times).
There are many ways to enter the Indian cricket team and these routes are decided after the best performance in domestic cricket. The most prominent in domestic cricket is the Ranji Trophy. Many players of Team India have entered the team through this route. The domestic cricket structure in India, that we see today in its current state, has been developed in decades. That’s the reason why we see a fresh and talented bunch of pace bowlers in the international setup. BCCI has worked really hard by investing financially in the infrastructure, maintenance, finding/identifying talented players and grooming them up. This has also improved the standard of Ranji cricket throughout these years.
History of Ranji Trophy
The Indian Cricket team started playing test cricket in 1933 at the time of British rule. The ‘Ranji’ trophy was started in the name of Ranjit Singh Vibhaji Jadeja as the team’s player and his skills. The Ranji Trophy was held for the first time in July 1934. The first match of the competition was held on 4 November 1934 between Madras and Mysore at Chepauk Stadium.
In the history of Indian cricket, Ranjit Singh was the first such player in the country, who got the opportunity to play in the England cricket team.
- The first match of Ranji Trophy was played on 4 November 1934. At Chepauk Stadium, Chennai. Between the team of Madras and Mysore.
- Ranji’s first century Hyderabad player S. M. Hadi’s name. He scored 132 runs in the first season against Mumbai in Secunderabad.
- The initial name of Ranji Trophy was ‘Cricket Championship of India’.
- Later it was named after Maharaja Ranjit Singhji, who was the king of Nawanagar princely state of India. Although Ranjit Singhji never played cricket for India.
- Most of the teams playing Ranji Trophy are the state teams of India.
- Mumbai has been the most successful team in the history of Ranji Trophy. Mumbai has won the trophy 41 times in total.
- Railways and Services (Army) teams also play in Ranji.
- Before independence, Ranji Trophy playing teams were mostly princely states.
- There was a time when it was almost impossible to defeat Mumbai. From 1958 to 1973 he held the trophy for 15 consecutive times.
- Wasim Jaffer is the highest run scorer in this tournament. He has scored more than 10,000 runs. Apart from this, Amol Majumdar of Mumbai is also a big batting name in Ranji.
Playing Ranji as a ticket to Indian Cricket team
Not all the players get to play for the National team. It is difficult for the selectors to short-list a bunch of players for a big lot of Ranji teams (38 in total). There are players like Amarjeet Kaypee, Wasim Jaffer and Amol Muzumdar who have spent ages in Ranji cricket but never played or played very little for the national team.
Nowadays, people say that IPL is the platform to perform and impress the selectors but that isn’t true. You become a promising player with raw talent by brilliant performance in IPL. The player is then pushed to domestic cricket (Ranji) and there the raw players are converted to experienced players and catch the eyes of the selectors.
IPL is not always the initial path of journey to Indian team. The nourishment starts from under-14, under-16, under-17 and specially under-19. Playing under-19 world-cup is also the stepping stone for a player to reach the Ranji team, IPL and finally make a debut for India.
There are some talented players like Chetshwar Pujara, Mayank Agarwal, Hanuma Vihari who played less IPL games but made their way into the team via test cricket.
Ranji Trophy is also the platform for revival of their(players) test careers. Players who are out of form at the international level can anyday come back and play the Ranji games to improve their ability, skills, work on their weaknesses, etc and afterwards make a comeback into the international arena.
Ranji Trophy Winners with most titles
Although there are 29 states in Indian there are 38 teams currently participate in the Ranji Trophy: Mumbai has won the most titles in the history of Ranji Trophy.
|Jammu and Kashmir||0|
Ranji Trophy Teams
The following 38 teams currently participate in the Ranji Trophy:
Ranji Trophy Championship FAQs
When does the 2020-21 Ranji Trophy begin?
How many teams are participating in this season?
A total of 38 teams are participating in the Ranji Trophy this season in 2020-21 that also includes 29 states and four of the eight union territories in India.
Are the Ranji matches telecasted on television?
More than 10 matches are played in a single day, hence it is difficult for the broadcasters to telecast so many matches. However, some matches of popular teams and the important matches like quarter-finals, semi-finals and finals are telecasted on television. You can watch the matches on Star Sports network, Jio Cricket or stream it live on hotstar.
How many matches will all teams play?
A total of 150 matches will be played in Ranji Trophy 2020-21 season.
Do we see the audience in the stands?
Not really to be honest. Although the tickets are feasible or sometimes free of cost there isn't much of a crowd. Occasionally the fans come to watch the matches when star players like Rohit Sharma, Ajinkya Rahane, Shikhar Dhawan, Prithvi Shaw etc play for their respective state teams.