Syed Mushtaq Ali trophy – BCCI’s costly venture to promote cricket in rural states & Everything you need to know!

Syed Mushtaq Ali:

On 17th December 1914 in the city of Indore Syed Mushtaq Ali was born. The sporting family played hockey but interest turned towards cricket convincing the school headmaster to form a cricket club at the age of 13 getting appreciation from CK Nayudu and Maharajah of Vizianagram sponsored for sports and education.

Keith Miller called Syed Mushtaq Ali one of the greatest cricketers of all time Ray Robinson called him the most courageous original among international batsmen
Syed Mushtaq Ali

Mushtaq made his first-class debut for team Maharajah XI against the Rest of India. The slow left-arm orthodox bowler grabbed a five-wicket haul in an unofficial test match in Ceylon, but for the 1st-class test match, he only endured three wickets in the Gardens of Eden.

In the year of 1936 test match against England in Manchester promoted to open the batting and smashed 112 which is the first-ever ton by an Indian batsman overseas he scored his runs at a very fast rate along with Vijay Merchant made a historical 203 run partnership in English soil.1952 India registered first test victory were Mushtaq last match at the age of 49 in which he scored 22 runs. Mushtaq had played for 46 teams in his first-class career. 


Inter-State T20 championship tournament was announced by BCCI in 2006 with teams in Ranji trophy divided into five groups, later changing its name to Syed Mushtaq Ali trophy(SMAT) in paying respect to the legendary player.


At 1st the tournament started as a round-robin in the year of 2013, it was turned into league games, the winners and then runners of the zonal teams were divided into two groups, and matches were conducted. After nine teams were eliminated from the domestic format in 2018-19 teams were divided into groups, the winner and runner taking place in the super league.

In the year 2021, a total of 38 teams were divided into five elite groups A, B, C, D, E, and Plate group. Facing each other in league matches within the group, top 5 from elite selected for quarter-finals. One from the plate group moved to pre-quarter-finals along with a team ranked in staying in at number two.8 teams will be playing in the knockout stage to determine the winner in finals.


4 points for each match, when two teams stay with the same points in a group net run rate will be taken into consideration for qualification to the next round.


Tamilnadu with 3 title wins.

Karnataka with 14 consecutive wins including league matches 

Individual Records:

  • Rohit Sharma scored the first century in the first season.
  • Kedhar Jadhav with 2282 runs in the SMAT tournament from 2011-2021
  • Shreyasyas Iyer 147 was the highest individual score.
  • Piyush Chawla with 85 wickets by an individual in a tournament.

Image credits: Wikipedia, espncricinfo

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