Entry restricted: NCA closes door on hangers-on

Yuvraj Singh and Zaheer KhanNCA has been like a second home to some players, who have had a history of injuries (This image was posted by Yuvraj Singh on his twitter account)

The Board of Control for Cricket in India decided to restrict its contracted players from overstaying their welcome at the National Cricket Academy in Bangalore. The NCA committee, which met on Thursday, will henceforth keep a tab on the players using its premises to ensure that only those undergoing rehabilitation are allowed extended stays. Fit players who will be visiting the NCA for training purposes will have to bear their own expenses.

While the BCCI had traditionally borne all the costs of their contracted players from accommodation to transport, those services will now be extended only to those injured and under the phsyiotherapist's care.

Pay per use

"If any player, who is not injured or hasn't been called in by the board-authorized physiotherapist, comes to the NCA, he will have to bear all the costs. For example, if Ajinkya Rahane wants to go to NCA for 10 days, he will be allowed to use our facilities but he will have to fend for himself when it comes to his stay and transport. Unless he is injured, of course," explained a BCCI official.

The decision has come about after the board found that a number of contracted Indian players were hanging around at the NCA endlessly on the BCCI's expenses. The committee headed by Ranjib Biswal was also miffed with the fact that many of them had participated in promotional activities on the sidelines.

"These players are earning massive amounts and I'm sure they can afford their expenses. It's a different issue if they are undergoing rehab. They can't remain here forever and expect us to pay for it," the source added.

The committee has also decided that the NCA will open their doors to all non-contracted players around the country for their rehabilitation and they can also consult the physiotherapist for help anytime. For training though, the domestic players will have to attend the BCCI's specialist academies in Mumbai, Mohali, Nagpur and Chennai where they'll find similar facilities. That will ensure that the NCA is not over-crowded, which has been the case especially in the aftermath of an IPL tournament.

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