Foreign players to lift domestic standards: Gavaskar

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Dubai, Sep 9 (UNI) Former captain and BCCI Technical Committee's chairman Sunil Gavaskar today came out in full support of the decision to allow foreign players in domestic cricket which he believes would raise the standard of the game in the country and would also help Indian players grow in a competitive environment.

''It was a conscious decision to open the door only for foreigners who have played at least 10 Tests or 20 ODI, so that only the quality and experienced cricketers make the cut,'' Gavaskar said while defending the panel's decision.

''We did not want people to come in and use our domestic tournaments as a learning ground,'' Gavaskar was quoted as saying by the Gulf News.

''So, we decided that the foreign player should have played in 10 Tests or 20 One-dayers. We felt that there was no point in permitting someone, who has played in only one Test match.

''He will not make any contribution to the domestic competition.

''If the foreign player is an experienced player then our young Ranji Trophy players can look up to him and can learn something from him,'' the legendary batsman stated.

Gavaskar further pointed out that the inclusion of foreign players in domestic teams would play a crucial role in lifting the standard of the game in certain states.

''Some of the former players in India, who have moved from one state to the other - like Chandrakant Pandit, Sandeep Patil, W V Raman and Arun Lal - made significant contributions to the application levels and attitudes of those teams.

''So we are hoping that it will happen when foreign players start playing for different states,'' he added.

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