The much-awaited Zim Cyber City Zim Afro T10 is less than three weeks away, and the five squads for the tournament have been confirmed. Beginning 20th July, some of the best white-ball cricketers will descend in Harare, and entertain the fans with some very keenly contested games. The grand final of the tournament is scheduled for 29th July, with all the games being played in Harare.
The inaugural edition Zim Cyber City Zim Afro T10 is a landmark tournament as this is the first-time franchise cricket is a part of Zimbabwean cricket. The five teams who will be battling it out for top honours are the Durban Qalandars, CapeTown Samp Army, Harare Hurricanes, Bulawayo Braves and Johannesburg Buffaloes. The think tanks of the five franchises came together during a grand ceremony at the Player Draft and finalised their squads, forming impressive line-ups, which promises to produce scintillating cricket.
The Durban Qalandars have a squad of 15 players and drafted in the likes of Asif Ali, Mohammed Amir, George Linde, Hazratullah Zazai, Tim Seifert, Sisanda Magala, Hilton Cartwright, Mirza Tahir Baig, Tayab Abbas, Craig Ervin, Tendai Chatara, Brad Evans, Clive Madande, Nick Welch, and Andre Fletcher.
The CapeTown Samp Army have 17 players on their roster, with stars such as Rahmanullah Gurbaz, Shaun Williams, Bhanuka Rajapaksa, Maheesh Theekshana, Sheldon Cottrel, Karim Janat, Chamika Karunaratne, Peter Hazlogou, Matthew Breetzke, Richard Ngarava, Zhuwao Cephas, Hamilton Masakadza, Tadshwani Marumani, Tinashe Kamunakewe, Parthiv Patel, Mohammed Irfan , and Stuart Binny.
The Harare Hurricanes also have 17 players in their camp, with impactful players such Eoin Morgan headlining the squad. Also on the team are Mohamed Nabi, Evin Lewis, Robin Uthappa, Donovon Ferraira, Shahnawaz Dahani, Duan Jansen, Samit Patel, Kevin Kothegoda, Christopher Mpofu, Regis Chakabva, Luke Jonwe, Brandon Mavuta, Tashinga Mushiwa, Irfan Pathan, Khalid Shah, and S Sreesanth.
The Bulawayo Braves will go into the inaugural edition Zim Cyber City Zim Afro T10 with a squad of 15 players, and have signed on Sikander Raza, Taskin Ahmed, Ashton Turner, Tymal Mills, Thisara Perera, Ben McDermott, Beau Webster, Patrick Dooley, Kobe Herft, Ryan Burl, Timycen Maruma, Joylord Gumbie, Innocent Kaia, Faraz Akram and Mujeeb ur Rahman.
The Johannesburg Buffaloes are the only team with a squad of 16 players, and they have acquired the services of Mushfiqur Rahim, Odean Smith, Tom Banton, Yusuf Pathan, Will Smeed, Noor Ahmad, Ravi Bopara, Usman Shinwari, Junior Dala, Blessing Muzarabani, Wellington Masakadza, Wesley Madhevere, Victor Nyauchi, Milton Shumba, Mohamed Hafeez, and Rahul Chopra.
All the teams will add another player to each of their squads in the coming days as five cricketers will be picked from the nationwide Emerging Player programme, which is designed to provide the youngsters with a chance to break onto the big stage.
Zimbabwe Cricket Managing Director Mr. Givemore Makoni said, “This is a historic day for Zimbabwean cricket and we can’t wait to open up the doors for such talented cricketers. Each of the five squads look extremely strong and I am sure the cricket on display will be of the highest order. And I am delighted that the Zim Cyber City Zim Afro T10 will also give the young cricketers a boost as they will be rubbing shoulders with some of the best players in the world.”
T Ten Global Sports Founder and Chairman Mr. Nawab Shaji Ul Mulk said, “The Zim Cyber City Zim Afro T10’s Player Draft is a very big day for the T Ten family and Zimbabwean cricket also. We are very happy to see that the squads are all well balanced and quite strong, which means the tournament will be a tight one. We can’t wait for the tournament to begin and then have some of the best cricketers from Zimbabwe and around the world entertain one and all. I would like to wish all the teams the very best as they begin preparing for the cricket festival.”