The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) has announced the annual contracts for the senior Indian women’s team. Captain Harmanpreet Kaur has been retained in the Grade A category alongside her deputy Smriti Mandhana and star all-rounder Deepti Sharma.
Meanwhile, the women cricketers in Category A earn Rs 50 lakh annually, while Category B players get Rs 30 lakh and the Category C receive Rs 10 lakh.
In the Grade B category, five players found places - Renuka Singh Thakur, Jemimah Rodrigues, Shafali Verma, Richa Ghosh and Rajeshwari Gayakwad.
Leg spinner Poonam Yadav, who was in the A category last year, doesn’t have a contract at all after falling down in the pecking order. She last played for India in March 2022.
Veteran pacer Shikha Pandey, who had made a surprise comeback for the T20 World Cup in South Africa, finds herself without a contract and so does wicket-keeper Taniya Bhatia.
The Grade C category where a player earns INR 10 Lakh includes Meghna Singh, Devika Vaidya, Sabbineni Meghana, Anjali Sarvani, Pooja Vastrakar, Sneh Rana, Radha Yadav, Harleen Deol and Yastika Bhatia.
Earlier last year, BCCI Secretary Jay Shah made the announcement on Thursday, stating that the match fee for both men and women players will be the same.
“I’m pleased to announce BCCI’s first step towards tackling discrimination. We are implementing a pay equity policy for our contracted women cricketers. The match fee for both Men and Women Cricketers will be same as we move into a new era of gender equality in Indian Cricket,” Shah said in an official statement.
As per the newly introduced system, Harmanpreet Kaur and Co. will earn match fees of INR 15 lakh per Test, INR 6 lakh per ODI, and INR 3 lakh per T20I, the same as their male counterparts.
“The women cricketers will be paid the same match fee as their male counterparts. Test (INR 15 lakhs), ODI (INR 6 lakhs), T20I (INR 3 lakhs). Pay equity was my commitment to our women cricketers and I thank the Apex Council for their support. Jai Hind,” he added.
Meanwhile, the BCCI recently staged the inaugural season of the Women’s Premier League which turned out to be a huge success. Mumbai Indians Women emerged as the champions of the inaugural edition after beating Delhi Capitals. While the BCCI is planning to extend the window of next season of WPL.