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General News Ranji Trophy 2016-17 to get underway on October 6
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Chhattisgarh will make their first-class debut when the 83rd edition of the Ranji Trophy gets underway from October 6. The Mohammad Kaif-led side, added as a 10th team in Group C, will take on Tripura in their opening encounter in Ranchi.

The 2015 season of Ranji Trophy was played in two intervals, with the Vijay Hazare Trophy and the Syed Mushtaq Ali Trophy sandwiched between the league stages and the knock-out stages of the first-class competition. However, that won't be the case for the upcoming season as the T20 competition and the 50-over tournament will only commence after the Ranji season ends.

Following recommendations from the BCCI's technical committee, which is headed by former India captain Sourav Ganguly, the 2016-17 season of Ranji Trophy will be held at neutral venues. The quarter-finals will be played between December 17-21, followed by the semi-finals from December 27. The final will be held between January 7-11, 2017.

The Irani Cup, which will see the winner of Ranji Trophy take on a Rest of India side, will be held from January 18 to January 22, 2017. This will be followed by the limited-overs competitions, starting with the revamped Syed Mushtaq Trophy, which starts on January 29. An interstate One-Day competition, with four groups of seven teams each, will be played from February 25. The top-two teams of each group will compete in the All India Knock-out Vijay Hazare Trophy, starting March 13.

India's 2016-17 domestic season will come to an end with the Deodhar Trophy, to be played from March 25 to March 29. It will be a triangular series, similar to the Challenger Trophy, with India A, India B and the winner of the Vijay Hazare Trophy as the three participating teams.

Mumbai, defending champions of Ranji Trophy, are grouped alongside Madhya Pradesh - one of the semi-finalists last season - as well as Punjab, Bengal, Tamil Nadu and Railways. Saurashtra, who earned a promotion after finishing as runners-up, are in Group B, which also has Karnataka, Delhi and Vidarbha. Andhra and Haryana, the two relegated sides, are part of Group C, along with Chhattisgarh, Kerala, Himachal Pradesh, among others.

Bengaluru will not host any Ranji Trophy games this season because of the ongoing renovation work at the M Chinnaswamy stadium, where the ground's drainage system is undergoing an upgrade. Belgaum and Raipur are the two new venues for the season, which will see games conducted across 40 centres.

Ranji Trophy Groups:

Group A: Mumbai, Baroda, Punjab, Madhya Pradesh, Bengal, Gujarat, Tamil Nadu, Railways, Uttar Pradesh

Group B: Saurashtra, Odisha, Delhi, Maharashtra, Karnataka, Vidarbha, Rajasthan, Assam, Jharkhand

Group C: Hyderabad, Haryana, Kerala, Himachal Pradesh, Tripura, Services, Goa, Jammu & Kashmir, Andhra, Chhattisgarh

Source:
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Airtel Digital HD Recorder / Kerala Vision Digital TV
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