Cricket South Africa (CSA) is leaving no stones unturned to make the inaugural edition of its T20 league a massive hit. The board has already announced that six teams will be a part of the first edition of the tournament and the owners for those six teams have also been revealed.
All six teams will be owned by the Indian Premier League (IPL) franchise owners including Reliance Industries Limited (Mumbai Indians); RPSG Sports (Lucknow Super Giants); Sun TV Network Limited (Sunrisers Hyderabad); Chennai Super Kings Cricket (CSK); Paarl Royals Sports Group (Rajasthan Royals), and JSW Sports (Delhi Capitals).
With so much hype around the CSA’s new T20 league, international players are also eager to feature in the first edition of the tournament and the signings for the same have already begun. As per a report, as many as 25 top cricketers from different countries have already signed up for CSA’s new T20 league. The prominent names include England white-ball captain Jos Buttler, swashbuckling batter Liam Livingstone, West Indies’ former captain Jason Holder, and others.
Around 10 cricketers from the Caribbean islands, 10 from Sri Lanka, and close to a dozen names from England have come on board. This is in addition to all the top South African T20 cricketers who are already on board for their own ‘domestic’ league. However, cricketers from Australia and New Zealand are likely to give the tournament a miss.
While Cricket Australia (CA) is handing lucrative contracts to its top white-ball cricketers like David Warner, Steven Smith, Pat Cummins, Mitchell Starc, and Cameron Green to hold them back for the country’s own T20 league, the Big Bash League, New Zealand cricket board (NZC) is in the process of drafting fresh contracts for their cricketers to remain committed to local First-Class cricket back home.
As per a TOI report, Jos Buttler, Liam Livingstone, Eoin Morgan, Jason Roy, Sam Curran, Adil Rashid, Tymal Mills from England; Jason Holder, Alzari Joseph, Obed McCoy, Dushmantha Chameera, Maheesh Theekshana, Bhanuka Rajapaksa, Harry Tector are among the names already on board.
Andre Russell, Sunil Narine signed up for UAE T20 league
It’s worth mentioning that the inaugural edition of the CSA T20 league will clash with the UAE T20 league raising questions on the availability of top players. It’s reported that Andre Russell and Sunil Narine who are a part of Kolkata Knight Riders (who own a team in the UAE T20 league) will not play in the CSA T20 league.
Meanwhile, Kieron Pollard (Mumbai Indians player) has not yet cleared his stance. Rovman Powell and Shimron Hetmyer, however, will play for the Delhi Capitals-backed franchise in the UAE T20 league.