Discussion in 'Cricket Talk' started by chandtara, Oct 2, 2017.
Least Morgan did something patriotic by selecting Stirling lol
Amjad Javed can't wait to line up with Shahid Afridi in T10 Cricket League
Amjad Javed says it’s an “honour” to be playing alongside Shahid Afridi in next month’s T10 Cricket League and believes it is the perfect opportunity for UAE players to prove they’re worthy of playing in elite T20 competitions.
Javed, 37, was among the picks in Saturday’s draft, selected by Pakhtoon team, which will be led by Afridi for the inaugural edition at Sharjah Cricket Stadium between December 14-17.
It means Javed will be meeting Afridi for the third time in three years. The all-rounder was part of the UAE squad when in the 129-run loss to Pakistan at the 2015 World Cup, before falling to a seven-wicket defeat in the same fixture at last year’s Asia Cup.
But he is looking forward to sharing the same dressing room with the former Pakistan captain – a man he calls as his “T20 batting hero”.
“It will be an honour to play with him in the same team,” he said. “The fan following will be more of him than any of the other players. But it certainly gives us the advantage that the most popular cricketer in the T20 league is on the same side as me.
“It’s something that I’m looking forward to by playing under him. I feel lucky that he has taken me because I scored some runs and took some wickets when we played against Pakistan.”
Rubbing shoulders with the likes of Pakistan’s Fakhar Zaman and Umar Gul and other elite stars will be something new for Javed and the other UAE team-mates.
Rameez Shahzad, Mohammad Naveed (Bengal Tigers), Shareef Asadullah, Ghulam Shabbir (Punjabi Legends), Rohan Mustafa, Imran Haider (Kerala Kings), and Saqlain Haider (Pakthoon) will also be in action over the four days.
In the past, the UAE internationals have been overlooked for T20 elite competitions apart from Chirag Suri’s selection for the Gujarat Lions at this year’s IPL.
But Javed feels the T10 Cricket League could be just the event to press their case and show their potential worldwide.
“It will give us the chance to show how good we are and hopefully go and play in one of the big T20 leagues.”
Wasim Akram backs Mohammad Amir to star for Maratha Arabians in new T10 Cricket League
Mohammad Amir was the first international player to be picked in the T10 Cricket League draft . Francois Nel / Getty Images
Wasim Akram has backed Mohammad Amir to bounce back from his form slump for Pakistan, and expects him to be one of the standout players in the new T10 Cricket League (TCL).
Amir was the first player picked when the TCL draft happened on board a yacht in Dubai Marina last week.
The fact he went to Maratha Arabians was of little surprise, given Wasim is the franchise mentor.
The former Pakistan left-arm pace bowler pushed for his selection, ahead of the likes of Fakhar Zaman, Sunil Narine and Kieron Pollard.
“It was a difficult choice, but what I think is that T10 will be all about bowling,” Wasim said. “The best team will be the team with the better bowling attack. Bits and bobs players won’t work here.
“In T20, you can still say ‘OK, this player can give you one over’. But in T10, I think the professional, regular bowlers have to bowl.
“That is why Amir was the pick, because he bowls a good yorker, and he has got pace.”
Wasim first recognised Amir’s merits 10 years ago, when he was an unknown hopeful at a pace-bowling camp in Lahore.
"The key is to keep taking wickets" - @RealShoaibMalik.
Watch to find out about Shoaib's thoughts on the T10 Cricket League, his strategy for the matches & more. pic.twitter.com/ErPyfby5Zf
— T10 Cricket League (@ttencricketuae) November 16, 2017
Even though Amir’s returns in the international sphere have generally been underwhelming over the past year, Wasim remains sure of his talent.
“It is one of those phases that everyone goes through, even if, OK, it is a little prolonged,” Wasim said. “Sometimes you bowl well and don’t get wickets, and other times you bowl you are lucky to get a five-for.
“As long as he has got the pace, and he is still only 25, I reckon he can get back into gear with one spell, a couple of quick wickets. I am not worried about him at all.”
Wasim’s view was endorsed by Dougie Brown, the UAE coach who will be tasked with harnessing the talents of the Maratha Arabians, having been named their coach.
“He is an outstanding death bowler, and you would suggest that in a 10-over competition, two overs per bowler is going to be two overs of death,” Brown said.
Loaded with a good strike rate, opener @AlexHales1 was picked by @MarathaArabians in round 4 of #TCLDraft. pic.twitter.com/Y9t6RI13NF
— T10 Cricket League (@ttencricketuae) November 15, 2017
“He is a young guy who carries the hopes of Pakistan, and clearly he is a good signing for any commercial business, but he has good skills that will stack up in a very, very short form of the game.”
The first TCL season will take place at the Sharjah Cricket Stadium from December 14 to 17, and Wasim is excited by the new concept.
“Nobody knows what is going to happen and what plan you require for this format,” he said. “When T20 cricket came in 10 years ago, everybody raised their eyebrows, but the idea is to have entertainment.
“In this country, time is of the essence. Kids don’t have time. They go to school, they come back, they do some sport.
“I think T10 can be successful. It is a new format, and that is exciting to me.”
Let's just have T1 why bother with anything else
too much man, 2 deliveries is enough that's where money is
T10 League to use white ball on Dhoni’s advice
Dubai: The upcoming T10 Cricket League will be played with white ball instead of pink ball following the suggestion of India’s two-time World Cup winning captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni.
Speaking to Gulf News, Shaji Ul Mulk, the chairman of T10 Cricket League, who held talks with Dhoni during the launch of the MS Dhoni Cricket Academy (MSDCA) earlier this month, said: “Dhoni and I talked at length about T10 cricket and he had some very interesting suggestions. He suggested that we should stick to white balls instead of the pink for our tournament.”
Mulk, who visualised the concept of T10 league, carried some of Dhoni’s suggestions to the T10 team owners and directors who met at Capital Club in DIFC to finalise the rules of the first ever T10 Cricket League which will be held from December 14 at the Sharjah Stadium. Following the meeting, team owners confirmed that all matches shall be played with white Kookaburra Turf Balls. Owners also voted against use of a pink ball under the light and keeping in mind the bright colours of the uniforms of the six teams taking part.
Like in T20 format, the minimum number of overs that has to be played in case of rain or interruption has been fixed to five overs per innings. In case of rain, the outcome of the match shall be derived using the Duckworth Lewis method.
It was also decided that in case of a tie, the result of the match shall be decided by a Super Over. Two points will be awarded for a win.
To ensure that the tournament is free of any corruption the owners and directors has decided to circulate the ICC Anti Corruption and ICC Anti Doping Codes and even stage an education sessions on playing conditions, code of conduct, ICC Anti Corruption and ICC Anti Doping on December 13, the day before the tournament.
The tournament will take off with Bengal Tigers taking on Kerala Kings soon after the opening ceremony on December 14. The owners agreed that players’ replacement will be allowed only for a player who is unavailable for the entire league due to unavoidable reasons. The replacement player can be selected from the list of unpicked players either from the same category or from the lower category as per the original player list.
December 14: 6pm: Opening Ceremony
Bengal Tigers vs Kerala Kings
Maratha Arabians vs Pakhtoons.
December 15: 4pm: Bengal Tigers vs Punjabi Legends, 6pm: Maratha Arabians vs Team Sri Lanka, 8pm: Punjab Legends vs Kerala Kings, 10pm: Pakhtoons vs Team Sri Lanka.
December 16: 4pm: Team 1 of Group A vs Team 3 of Group B, 6pm: Team 3 of Group A vs Team 1 of Group B, 8pm: Team 2 of Group A vs Team 2 of Group B, 10pm: Bottom 2 Teams of both the groups combined will play off for the 5th and 6th place.
December 17: From 5.30pm: First Semi Finals: Team 1 overall v Team 4 overall.
Second Semi Finals - Team 2 overall v Team 3 overall, Finals, followed by closing ceremony.
Sarfraz Ahmed, Waqar Younis excited about Bengal Tigers' stint
Cricket is ready to get an even shorter format as T10 Cricket League unfolds in UAE in December and the captain Sarfraz Ahmed and coach Waqar Younis of the franchise Bengal Tigers are excited about it. The tournament, featuring six teams, will have 10-overs each side in 90 minutes format, which brings the promise of fast scoring and exciting games.
No room for making mistakes
Bengal Tigers captain Sarfaraz believes the cricketers can barely make any mistake in this short format. “Come and witness big sixes and four in the thrilling 90 minutes new format. I am excited to be part of the T10 and will leave no stone unturned to give you all a paisa wasool dhamaka. In this new format there will be no room for either taking time or making mistakes. So, join us to experience a new era of super-fast and super exciting version of cricket and spread your support for Bengal Tigers.”
‘Barrage of runs’ and ‘reckless fall of wickets’
Coach Waqar added,“Excited and thrilled to be part of this new passion packed tournament which will be played in December. I can guarantee that cricket fan will love seeing the barrage of runs one side and the reckless fall of wickets on the other side. It would definitely be action packed league along with fun, frolic and entertainment. Additionally, I am confident that Bengal tigers hold a strong chance of winning this tournament due to the strong lineup of the all-rounder cricketers in the team along with never-say-die attitude captain Sarfaraz Ahmed, who has been on the periphery of the Pakistan squad for quite some time. I am Thankful to Mr. Anis Sajan, owner of the team and looking forward to this wonderful league.”
Lot of actions on the cards
Team owner Mr. Anis Sajan said: “I’m very happy to be a part of the T10 cricket league because of its fast pace nature and I believe this tournament has a bright future. Fans can expect a lot of action because of its shorter format and as there is going to be lots of fours and sixes hit at the same time a lot of wickets falling as the players will try to clear the boundaries. When it comes to cricket the first names that comes is Bengal Tigers as Mr. Cricket is acquainted with it and that is the reason we are a team to beat.”
T10 lool. Just call it stick cricket.
T10 Cricket League 2017: All you need to know
What T10 Cricket League is the pilot edition of a new 10-over format of cricket. Involving some of the leading players from the international game, it is the brainchild of UAE businessman Shaji Ul Mulk. He believes a match lasting 90 minutes, the same duration as other international sports like football, represents the future of the game.
Where Sharjah Cricket Stadium
When December 14-17
Tickets Available at branches of UAE Exchange, Al Fardan Exchange, Al Ghurair Exchange, Leopards Courier, and Karachi Darbar.
North Stand: Dh20
West Stand: Dh40
Grand Stand: Dh70
Member’s Enclosure: Dh100
Celebrity Stand: Dh500
The tickets are also be available online at q-tickets.com/t10
The T10 Cricket League is the brainchild of Shaji Ul Mulk, second from left. Antonie Robertson / The National
Schedule December 14
6pm, opening ceremony, followed by:
Bengal Tigers v Kerala Kings
Maratha Arabians v Pakhtoons
4pm, Bengal Tigers v Punjabi Legends
6pm, Maratha Arabians v Team Sri Lanka
8pm, Punjab Legends v Kerala Kings
10pm, Pakhtoons v Team Sri Lanka
4pm, 1st in Group A v 3rd in Group B
6pm, 3rd in Group A v 1st in Group B
8pm, 2nd v Group A v 2nd in Group B
10pm, 5/6th place play-off
5.30pm, 1st semi-final – Team 1 v Team 4, followed by second semi-final and final
Leading player: Virender Sehwag (India)
Top picks: Mohammed Amir (Pakistan), Imad Wasim (Pakistan)
UAE players: Shaiman Anwar, Zahoor Khan
Leading player: Sarfraz Ahmed (Pakistan)
Top picks: Sunil Narine (West Indies), Mustafizur Rahman (Bangladesh)
UAE players: Mohammed Naveed, Rameez Shahzad
UAE captain Rohan Mustafa will also be in action at the tournament. Pawan Singh / The National
Leading player: Eoin Morgan (England)
Top picks: Kieron Pollard (West Indies), Sohail Tanvir (Pakistan)
UAE players: Rohan Mustafa, Imran Haider
Leading player: Shahid Afridi (Pakistan)
Top picks: Fakhar Zaman (Pakistan), Tamim Iqbal (Bangladesh)
UAE players: Amjad Javed, Saqlain Haider
Leading player: Shoaib Malik (Pakistan)
Top picks: Hasan Ali (Pakistan), Chris Jordan (England)
UAE players: Ghulam Shabber, Shareef Asadullah
Team Sri Lanka Cricket will be led by Dinesh Chandimal, and made up exclusively of players from Sri Lanka
Chandimal to lead Team Lanka in T10 League
Dubai: Sri Lanka’s Test team captain Dinesh Chandimal, currently locked in a tough Test series against India, will lead Sri Lanka in the upcoming T10 Cricket League taking place at Sharjah Cricket Stadium from December 14 to 17.
Speaking to Gulf News, Vijay Vyas, one of the two owners of the team, said: “We’ve appointed Chandimal as he is a great leader in the longer format and we want to see how he can handle the team in this shortest format. Tried and tested players are always great to be seen in action, but you need a leader who can inspire youngsters to perform.”
Despite fighting with their backs against the wall against India, Chandimal hit 57 and 61 against India in Nagpur Test to prove that he is a great fighter who loves to show the way.
“We have many promising young cricketers Wanidu Hasaranga, Vishwa Fernando, Bhanuka Rajapaksa and Sachitra Senanyake and we want to see them give their best in this tournament,” said Kashif Rijas Shahzad, the other owner of the team.
The first match that will see Chandimal in action will be against the Maratha Arabians on December 15.
Other players to watch out are hard-hitting and part-time leg spinner Dilshan Munaweera and middle order bat Kithruwan Vithanage who made his mark in the Under-19 side. Other young players include Angelo Perera, who jump-started his career with a century for the under 19s against Bangladesh in 2009 and left-hander Shehan Jayasuriya.
Nipun Karunanayake, Wanidu Hasaranga, Kasun Madushanka, Vishva Fernando, Alankara Asanka, Ramik Rambukwella, Shehan Madushanka Devapurag and, Lahiru Gedara are all well versed in domestic cricket limited over matches. “Like Chandimal, who is match-fit playing in India, all the others are practicing hard for this tournament under the watchful eyes of former Sri Lankan cricketers Avishka Gunawardana as head coach and Nuwan Zoysa as bowling coach,” added Shahzad.
Vyas went on to announce that Lankan players will play this tournament with great seriousness to win it. “There might exist in some quarters the fallacy that we are all here to have a little fun and enjoy the experiment. Nothing could be farther from the truth. This is not an experiment. A great deal of thought has gone into it and the research has shown we are on the right track,” said Vyas.
Shaji-Ul Mulk, the chairman of the T10 tournament is delighted at the direct support from Sri Lankan cricket board. “We are happy at the farsightedness of Shaji and his unwavering commitment to the format. The format will be a surefire winner. In the subcontinent, we play ‘gully’ cricket and enjoy the thrill of it. This has the same speed and fervour and is just a refined version of it at the highest level,” added Vyas.
T10 Right Format In Cricket to Take to Olympics, Says Sehwag
Mumbai:Former Test batsman Virender Sehwag on Thursday backed the inclusion of cricket in the Olympic Games and felt the T10 format will be ideal to be drafted into the quadrennial sports extravaganza.
"I think (if) we are talking about (the fact) that cricket should be a part of the Olympics, I think T10 is the right format. Because it gets over in 90 minutes and it's like a football match and a result will come. So I think, this is the right format, if ICC is thinking about talking to the (International) Olympic Association (Committee) that cricket should be part of that (the Olympics)," the former swashbuckling India opener said at an event here.
Sehwag will be captaining 'Maratha Arabians' team, which will feature in the T10 Cricket League to be played from December 14-17 in the United Arab Emirates. He leads a squad which features former Sri Lankan great Kumar Sangakkara and Pakistan players Mohammed Amir and Kamran Akmal.
The team's jersey was launched at the event this afternoon. He said he backed the T10 format as he felt more nations would be able to produce one or two match-winning players and compete well.
"(I back it) because more nations can play T10 and one batsman or one bowler can win you the game. So every country can produce one or two players who can win the T10 matches.
"Now the ICC (International Cricket Council) has to think if they want to take this to (International) Olympic Association (Committee) or not. All the nations, who are smaller nations, who are playing four-day (games), Test matches, One-Day (matches) or T20, they can play T10 and cricket can be part of Olympic as well," added Sehwag.
However, the cricketer-turned-commentator refused to answer a question about demand for fee hike for the Indian players.
Ticket sales get under way for T10 league
Sharjah: Ticket sales for the T10 Cricket League, to held at the Sharjah Cricket Stadium from December 14-17 commenced as Heera Group was unveiled as the title sponsors of the tournament in a colourful function held at the Ramoji Film City in Hyderabad on Saturday night.
With top international cricketers from around the world contesting in this unique tournament, the organisers have announced that tickets will be available at all branches of the UAE Exchange, Al Fardan Exchange and Al Ghurair Exchange as well as Leopards Courier and Karachi Darbar outlets across the Emirates.
To ensure good turnout, the organisers have fixed affordable rates for the tickets priced from Dh20. The rates will be Dh20 for North Stand, West Stand (Dh40) Grand Stand (Dh70) and Member’s Enclosure (Dh100)·and Celebrity Stand (Dh500). The tickets shall also be available online at q-tickets.com/t10
The launch of the title sponsors was attended by representatives of the franchises and the high profile wrestler The Great Khali. Dr Nowhera Shaik, Founder & CEO of Heera Group said: “As a business group, we have always backed innovative ideas. When this concept came along, I was keen that we get associated with it, as we ourselves come from the land where cricket is followed passionately.”
Shoji Ul Mulk, the chairman of the T10 league, who visualised this format, said: “We need to evolve with times and nothing should signify this better than giving a product to the fans that they can relate with. So here we are after months of planning we now unveil to the world, our dream league,” said Mulk, also the chairman of TCL and a Member of the Emirates Cricket Board (ECB).
The work on the pitches to suite T10 cricket is under way at the Sharjah Cricket Stadium. “The pitch at this venue has a low bounce in the cooler months and this will help the batsmen. We all believe that Sharjah magic will endure. This is in keeping with the UAE’s reputation for being at the spearhead of innovative ideas and hence is the best place to set the T10 ball rolling,” added Ul Mulk.
PCB allows top Pakistani cricketers to play in dubious Indian-owned league
ISLAMABAD: The leadership of Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB), to favour a few individuals, has controversially allowed its contracted cricket players to play a dubious Indian-owned league in Sharjah this month, in a format which is not approved by the ICC. The decision is likely to slash PCB’s own successful Pakistan Super League’s worth. Interestingly, India has not sent even a single player to the league in which, five out of six teams are owned by the Indian nationals while one has an Afghan owner.
The PCB was in a hurry to issue NOCs to the players who had central contracts because the franchise owners of PSL had severe reservation on sending players to a private Indian league. Upon getting such a strong and harsh response from the PSL franchise owners, seniors at the PCB who had first opted for voting on the issue later preferred tweeting the decision of supporting the T-10 league.
Cricket observers equate this decision as a suicide mission of PCB for the PSL because with the inclusion of Pakistan’s 1st tier players, the worth of T-10 League has increased manifold and it would become a mini PSL ahead of the main PSL.
Many eyebrows have been raised why the standard procedure has not been adopted with taking such a big step for Pakistan cricket. When did the invitation come from the UAE? How did the PCB treat it? Was any evaluation conducted on sending or not sending Pakistani players to a private owned Indian league? Was a value assigned to permitting Pakistani players and was that a market value open to others bidders? What benefit the PCB will attain after sending senior players to the T-10 league? Was the issue discussed in the Board of Governors of PCB? Why was voting not held when promised by PCB before the PSL franchise owners? Has PCB been given any favour by the T-10 league organisers?
The PSL franchise owners are feeling uneasy at PCB’s decision because the T-10 league is being held ahead of PSL and it is aimed at undermining the PSL which has now become a brand. The T-10 league is being held on the same venue where Pakistan plans to hold PSL and allowing Pakistani players without any evaluation would only undermine the value of PSL.
Earlier on September 4, 2017 the representatives of PSL franchise Karachi Kings had written an email to Chairman PCB saying that the franchises would like to express concern that such leagues will have an impact on PSL and will jeopardize our existing and potential sponsors in Dubai and even in Pakistan since “we all agree to point that November and December are the crucial months for us to finalise the sponsors. In this regard, we would request you kindly look into this matter and take some possible action to restrict the tournament like not allowing Pakistani players to participate and play for this league.”
The News Investigation cell through multiple sources has seen emails and minutes of PSL Secretariat and confirmed through PCB and PSL franchise owners accounts the unanimous protest of all the franchise owners.
Records show that Peshawar Zalmi representative had said, PCB had produced wonderful players through the PSL why should PCB risk throwing the players in an unregulated league where India has not sent its single players; our players might be trapped and blackmailed. Franchise owners had noted that PCB is unable to explain what benefit it has negotiated while making such a controversial decision? “Have the bilateral series between India and Pakistan has been revived?” questioned the franchise owners.
Representatives of Lahore Qalanders had noted at the PCB meetings that PCB had assured them that the decision to send Pakistani players would be done through voting on the issue but later instead of voting, PCB announced the decision of sending Pakistan players to T-10 league. The franchise representatives of Multan and Islamabad had maintained that the PCB was given choices that Pakistan may send its retired players or second tier players but not the one produced by PSL and main stars, but all suggestions fell on deaf ears. Records show that one franchise owners had said, “With such huge Indian funding in T-10 league, it is most likely that Pakistani players would be trapped and later blacked mailed by the bookies to manage them in the PSL. “T-10 league is actually a bookies’ gateway for PSL and it is not recognised or regulated by ICC”. When contacted, the owners of PSL franchise refused to go on record fearing PCB wrath against them and their contract adding that, “Our official reservations and feedback is with PCB and PSL secretariat.”
Details reveal that T-10 League is owned by a Dubai-based company owned by an Indian millionaire who has no background in sports. The T-10 league would have been worthless had it been played san Pakistani players and Pakistan players were only allowed after one of the franchise owners of PSL got some share in the T-10 league, thus ‘forcing’ the PCB to make a dubious decision not to the liking of other franchise owners and cricket observers.
Former Chairman PCB Zaka Ashraf, when contacted, said that what are the reasons that the PCB has all of a sudden developed soft corner for Indian businessmen holding private leagues in the UAE? He stated that this step of PCB is aimed at destroying the PSL in particular and cricket in general in the country. Everyone knows that the ultimate beneficial would be Indians from this T-10 league yet the PCB first rejected the proposal and then accepted the same in the next meeting. He urged the pattern in chief of PCB to order an inquiry into the matter to save Pakistan’s cricket.
Senior legal experts believe that as a state body, PCB, that owns and controls PSL, is bound by law take all decisions in accordance with law, in a transparent manner and in the best interest of PCB, PSL, PSL’s franchise owners and also the state of Pakistan instead of favoring a private party. Taking opaque decisions and announcing them through twitter, they say, is an example of abuse of law that is unacceptable under the laws of Pakistan. ‘Even if PCB had decided to allow its players to play for private parties,’ they claimed, ‘then, under the laws of Pakistan, PCB was bound to have conducted a transparent bidding process at least to demonstrate the it is selling its assets or rights for the highest value.’ Legal experts also maintain that if the PCB’s ‘twitter decision’ is challenged in court, , PCB will have to will have to satisfy the court that it had taken the decision in accordance with law, in compliance with prescribed procedures, in a transparent manner and in the best interest of the country and PCB as well as PSL’.
Javaid Miandad when contacted by The News said that if anything negative happens in the T-10 league then who would be responsible for that? He maintained that countries run their cricket through policies and regulations but in Pakistan, players are being sent to Indian owned private leagues, tainted players are being allowed to play and so on and so forth. The retired cricketer was of the view that the PM of Pakistan is the pattern in chief of the PCB and he should take cognizance of the serious blunder PCB has committed. Miandad was of the view that shorter formats of any game generate bookies’ interests and same is happening in cricket and with introduction of T-10 league that too financed by India, it is highly likely that Pakistani players would be offered lucrative things because there would be little or no check and balance.
Former cricketer Zaheer Abbas said that as our league PSL is around the corner with PSL franchises and sponsors locking deals, it was not wise move to allow top Pakistan players sign for T-Ten league as this may harm sponsorship prospects of PSL teams. “The timing isn’t good to let Pakistani players play this league which may become competitor of PSL. Future of T-Ten is yet to be determined, but I would suggest that for shorter formats of Cricket you need to minimise number of players in each team”, he said.
Even the Prime Minister of Pakistan, who is also the Patron in Chief of Pakistan Cricket Board, has been requested to take immediate action to save Pakistan cricket. A request sent to PM Shahid Khaqan Abbasi says, “I take this opportunity to invite your kind attention, towards a very serious conspiracy, to isolate Pakistan in the community of cricket playing nations; and defame our country by involving our players in T 10 League or Ten Cricket League, which is not approved by the ICC, but is also heavily infested with the Indian nationals. As far as Indians are concerned, entire world knows that India is using boycott of Pakistani cricket, as a policy tool of its intelligence agencies/government, to disrupt any international cricket/sports revival in Pakistan, raising false bogey of security threats to foreign players in Pakistan. So much so, India has refused to play cricket with Pakistan on neutral venues, not allowed our cricket, hockey and Kabaddi players to participate in league tournaments in India, but has not allowed its cricket players to play in our PSL tournament. Now, suddenly Indians have sprouted to not only play the T-10 League in Sharjah, but Indian nationals, Neelesh Bhatnagar and Anis and Rizwan Sajan, have purchased Gujarat Tigers, who will compete in the upcoming Ten Cricket League. Moreover, out of the six teams of this league, five are owned by the Indians and one by an Afghani. In this regard, PCB instead of acting in prudent manner, has allowed over 25 Pakistani players to participate in this ICC unapproved dubious cricket league, which may be a disaster for Pakistani cricket, as any spot fixing reoccurrence and resultant ban of our players, will result in causing severe damage to our own PSL tournament, Pakistani international cricket and tarnishing the image of Pakistan. In view of the foregoing facts mentioned above, about the Indian connection with T 10 League, the sanction of NOC by the PCB to over 25 Pakistani players, is an unpardonable act of the….PCB, for which you are requested to immediately intervene in the matter; and order all the BOG members of the PCB, to swiftly act, to cancel the NOC granted by the chairman PCB, to the over 25 Pakistani players, for playing in an ICC unapproved league, having direct Indian connections.”
PCB Chairman Najam Sethi was contacted and messages were sent but he did not respond till the filing of the report. However, unofficial response from PCB was, “The T10 League Company is based out of Dubai and we have to oblige the host country as we have good relations. Also our players are getting exposure to more international cricket and sports is development. Rules have not been violated by PCB but PSL franchise owners are upset as it may compete with their financial interests however PCB has a larger goal of cricket development in mind also.”
One of the officials of PCB on condition of anonymity told this correspondent that at first it was decided that Pakistan will not send its players to the T-10 league but later one of the franchise owners of PSL convinced the PCB chairman to allow Pakistani players to play the Indian-owned league.
Minutes of the 45th PCB Governing Board meeting held in Lahore on 28th July, 2017 reveal that ‘Members unanimously agreed that any such ventures which went against the interests of PSL and PCB should be opposed and subjected to approval of the BoG but at the same time tensions should not be created with Emirates Cricket Board if it supported such ventures.
While in the 47th meeting held on November 22, the PCB Board Meeting minutes say that in compliance with the guidelines given by BoG, PCB has approved its players to participate in T10 League in December 2017 which was sanctioned by Emirates Cricket Board. This approval was given after hectic deliberation with all stakeholders including sponsors of PSL to ensure that this decision does not impact PSL. The PCB has also stood to gain financially as it has negotiated a fee of US $400000/- to be paid by the organisers in lieu of issuance of NOCs to our players.
Former Pakistan skipper Asif Iqbal shares his thoughts on T-10 concept
Former Pakistan skipper Asif Iqbal, who brought cricket to the desert years ago, shared a few thoughts on t-10 concept.
“T-10 cricket is an absolutely new concept and perhaps the most intriguing feature is that its launch is not being overseen by any official cricketing body. This is not a product of the ICC or the PCB, but an entirely private venture. If it becomes popular, the credit should go to those who have conceived this unique idea,” He said.
He also said, “It is impossible to assess at the moment whether it will ‘catch on’. When T-20 cricket started, nobody thought it would be popular but everybody who thought so has been proved wrong. With time available for leisure activities being increasingly restricted, it is quite possible that it will be very popular.”
Former cricketer enlightens with the innovations and the strategies that can be tried in T-10 cricket.
“With each side facing just ten overs, it is almost inevitable that most playing members of a side based on eleven players will not get a chance to bat. Keeping that in mind, here are some innovations that could be tried in this form of the game with a view to making it more competitive and interesting:
1. It may be considered whether a fixed number of batsmen should be allowed to bat. For example, a side’s innings may end at the fall of the 6th wicket. For fielding purposes, the side will continue to consist of 11 players.
2. A batsman should be made to retire after he has scored a certain number of runs, say 30.
3. A partnership that has batted for say 5 overs may be discontinued, with the option with the batting side to decide which of the two batsmen is to be called back.
4. To make run scoring slightly more difficult, it may be an idea to introduce no fielding restrictions in this form of the game. There will therefore be no circles, no provisions to have a set number of fielders in ‘catching’ positions or in run saving positions. However, the normal rules of cricket, like no more than 2 fielders behind square on the leg side, will apply.
5. If TV accessories like snickometer, hawk-eye, hot spot etc are available, it may be an idea to use a different interpretation of hawk-eye whereby all balls hitting the stump are judged out, with no such thing as ‘umpire’s call’. This important move could pave the way for a similar change in all forms of the game which many people would support as it provides a more even playing field.
6. To enable the game to move quickly, bowlers’ run-ups may be limited.”
The upcoming cricket revolution, T-10 cricket league is all set to kick-off this month.
PCB rubbishes ‘false reporting’ on Indian-owned T-10 league
LAHORE: Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) on Thursday refuted a story published in the daily English newspaper The News which had termed the upcoming T-10 league as Indian-owned and dubious. The story also revealed that PCB is risking its players by allowing them to participate in the T-10 league. The league will be played later this month in Sharjah.
The T-10 league, which is the first of its kind, was launched in United Arab Emirates earlier this year. The league will feature both current and former cricketers from across the board. Usman Manzoor’s story titled – PCB allows top Pak cricketers to play in dubious Indian-owned league – was published in The News on Thursday criticizing PCB administration for allowing its players to play a ‘a dubious and Indian-owned league’.
PCB in its response said that it is shocked by the irresponsible and false reporting. “It seems competing media interests are dragging PCB into a nasty situation against national interest,” PCB’s press release read.
The facts are contrary to the news on the T-10 league which is set to take place in Sharjah from December 14 to 19, 2017. “The ICC has not disapproved the league. In fact, it has lent the support of its Anti-Corruption Unit (ACU) to it to ensure it is free of such problems, the Sri Lanka and Bangladesh Cricket Boards are fully supporting it with one team each of their players,” the press release read.
The PCB has taken a fee of US $4.00,000/ from the league to allow only ten of its centrally contracted players to participate in it. This money is being spent on game development in the country. 80% of the shares of the company that owns the league are held by Pakistanis, the owners are meanwhile Muslims. The one Indian minority shareholder is also a Muslim.
Furthermore, the PCB Board of Governors have agreed to support the League following a firm request from the Emirates Cricket Board (ECB) that is a PCB partner in critical ways by hosting PSL and PCB bilateral cricket series. The apprehensions of two PSL franchises were resolved in a meeting on the subject earlier and there is no conflict of interest or competition between a 10 over league spread over four days only in one venue and PSL spread over 34 matches and six weeks in four venues.
“Players from six top cricketing national Boards like England, West Indies, South Africa, etc have got NOCs to play in this league. These include Eoin Morgan, Shakib ul Hassan, Carlos Brathwaite, Dinesh Chandimal, Darren Sammy, etc. In fact, many current players from across the globe are featuring in the league which shows the PCB has released players in a competitive event,” PCB asserted
One PSL franchise owner has a financial stake in the league and believes that this supplement its bigger interest in the PSL instead of undermining it. It should also be noted that Anti-Corruption Laws of ICC will be applicable. This means there will be an Anti-Corruption Unit set up for the event like in any international event or league to keep an eye on players, and keep the game free of corruption (Two PCB ACU representatives will also monitor the league.)
The PCB has adopted a policy of friendly relations with other cricket Boards, and therefore allows its players to feature in different international leagues as a measure of reciprocity. In this regard, earlier this year, Pakistan players participated in the Caribbean Premier League (CPL) and currently-list players are featuring in the Bangladesh Premier League (BPL). The players released for T-Ten league will further strengthen the existing relationship with ECB which has been very supportive of Pakistan cricket for a long time.
It must be noted that with the gradual return of international cricket to Pakistan the ECB has to develop its own events that can sustain its cricketing infrastructure in the UAE and events like T10 that are in no competition with PSL enable the ECB to plan their future once Pakistan cricket fully returns home.
Finally, the PCB condemned all allegations and termed that an attack on the integrity of Pakistan’s cricket that is not in the national interest.
Former Pakistan cricketers flay PCB’s decision on T10 League in Sharjah
LAHORE: Former Pakistan cricketers have expressed their reservations over Pakistan Cricket Board’s (PCB) decision to release some of its top players for the dubious ten-over-a-side cricket tournament dubbed ‘Ten10 Cricket League’ set to be held in mid December in Sharjah, United Arab Emirates.
Former ICC president and Test captain Zaheer Abbas on Friday voiced his doubts over the board’s wisdom in giving a green light to its contracted players to play the league. “It’s difficult to determine the future of ten overs cricket. And it’s very close to Pakistan Super League [schedule wise]. The PCB should not have allowed its players to join the league in such a short window,” the former captain remarked. “Ten overs is too easy. Extremely convenient money. What’s the point of fielding 11 players each side in such a format? Six or seven players are enough. Honestly, I can’t see any future for this format,” the ‘Asian Bradman’ said, further noting that the players would have to be vigilant against dangers of corruption during the league.
“The PCB should have considered a lot of things before releasing players like this.”
Former cricketer and team selector Mohsin Khan also shared his opinion on the league. “With this T10 League, where exactly are you taking cricket? Are you going to come up with five-overs cricket next?” The former batsman said the PCB should be more selective about where it sends its players. “We should only send our players to selective, good-standard competitions. We should maintain a standard and preserve our cricketers,” he said, pointing out examples of Australia, India and England. The upcoming tour to New Zealand is very important. Our domestic and international cricket should come first,” he added.
Former cricketer Aamir Sohail said the conflicting stories about T10 League were disconcerting. “You have to see that if one franchise owner is not doing something benefiting Pakistan cricket, then you have to sit down and talk with him,” he said, adding that it seemed the board had not thought through the whole matter. The PCB issued a press release on Thursday in response to a media story on the upcoming league, in an attempt to justify its reasoning behind allowing the players to participate in the tournament. The board’s statement, however, has raised further questions about a lack of transparency and due process adopted by the PCB in releasing its top players for the ‘non-serious’ T10 League.
Should be fun cricket.
10 players to watch in the UAE over the next week
Carlos Brathwaite of West Indies will be remembered for hitting four sixes in the last over of the World Twenty20 final against England. Francois Nel / Getty Images
1 Carlos Brathwaite (Punjabi Legends)
This is a step into the unknown for everyone, of course. But presumably a 10-over match will maximise the importance of six-hitting even more than Twenty20 already does. In which case, somebody who can hit 24 from four balls with a world title on the line could be very valuable indeed.
Fast bowler Mohammed Amir has an excellent Twenty20 record for Pakistan. Charlie Crowhurst / Getty Images
2 Mohammed Amir (Maratha Arabians)
The first pick at the T10 Cricket League draft, a decision driven largely by the influence of Wasim Akram, Maratha Arabians’ team mentor. The fast bowler may have been wicket-shy for Pakistan of late, but his T20 economy rate in power play overs has been outstanding over the past two years.
Virender Sehwag's selection is out of the box considering he has been long-retired. Agencies
3 Virender Sehwag (Maratha Arabians)
A quirky selection this, seeing as Sehwag is a long-time retired. Officially, he hung up his boots in order to be eligible for the Masters Champions League in the UAE last year. He was masterful in that competition, as the Gemini Arabians won out, but he has not taken the field in serious cricket since.
Pakistan opener Fakhar Zaman will be known for his performance against India in the Champions Trophy. Ian Kington / AFP
4 Fakhar Zaman (Pakhtoons)
Another first-round draft pick, the left-handed opener is arguably Pakistan’s most exciting batsman at present. Zaman first rose to prominence in the UAE with Lahore Qalandars in the Pakistan Super League. He will not waste much time getting after bowlers in the new format.
Sarfraz Ahmed has enjoyed plenty of success in the Pakistan colours this year. Geoff Caddick / AFP
5 Sarfraz Ahmed (Bengal Tigers)
It has been some while now since Sarfraz scored any runs of note. That said, his exemplary captaincy has meant he has hardly been required as Pakistan have cut a swathe through international limited-overs cricket. Whatever he does at present seems to turn to gold, which bodes well for Bengal Tigers.
Eoin Morgan will take whatever practice he can get ahead of the ODI series in Australia. Reuters
6 Eoin Morgan (Kerala Kings)
Once of four active international captains playing in the first T10 Cricket League – the others being Sarfraz, Dinesh Chandimal and Rohan Mustafa. Quite what value he will derive from 10-over cricket remains to be seen, but Morgan will want to get his eye in ahead of England’s ODI series in Australia.
The T10 league will provide Mohammed Naveed the big stage he needs to showcase his talent. Satish Kumar / The National
7 Mohammed Naveed (Bengal Tigers)
The fast bowler has for ages been craving the sort of limelight that UAE cricket rarely affords. The T10 Cricket League will provide him with the biggest stage since the national team played at the Asia Cup T20 in Bangladesh last year. He excelled there, and is keen to do so again in Sharjah.
Sri Lanka all-rounder Thisara Perera has recent experience of UAE conditions with Sri Lanka. Peter Cziborra / Reuters
8 Thisara Perera (Team Sri Lanka Cricket)
Given the role he plays for Sri Lanka, as a late-middle-order batsman and seam-bowler, he is used to having to make the most of brief opportunities to impress. Those opportunities will be even briefer in the new, 90-minute format. He also has recent experience of UAE conditions with Sri Lanka.
Paul Stirling, left, rarely needs any time to play himself in in whatever format he is playing. Nezar Balout / AFP
9 Paul Stirling (Kerala Kings)
The burly Irish opener rarely needs any time to play himself in in whatever format he is playing. As such he is one player who will perfectly fit one of the slogans that T10 cricket’s social media team are hoping will catch. Namely, that Every Ball Counts.
One hopes Pakistan's Umar Gul can roll back the years in the new format. Pawan Singh / The National
10 Umar Gul (Pakhtoon)
The Pakhtoons squad feels a little like a rehab clinic for Pakistan pace bowlers. Each of Junaid Khan, Sohail Khan, and Mohammed Irfan have vied for places in the Pakistan attack in recent years. Umar Gul has been even more rarely spotted in that time. Let’s hope he can roll back the years in the new format.
PCB chairman first refused then agreed to send Pak players for cricket league
ISLAMABAD: The Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) Chairman, Najam Sethi, on September 10 in a televised interview had clearly announced that the Board will not release its players for T10 league nor would support any such event because it was clashing with the revenues of the Pakistan Super League (PSL).
Najam Sethi had told the media that the PCB had not been formally contacted in this regard and if the Board receives any formal communication, even then it will not put the PSL at stake. After one month of this interview, the PCB chairman decided to endorse the controversial T10 league without due diligence, transparency and proper bidding.
Najam Sethi in an interview to a private television channel said: “It has been decided in the PSL secretariat that the PCB has no association with the T10 league nor will the PCB support this league”. He added: “We would not become part of any such league which will ultimately damage our PSL because its revenues and dates clash with our PSL.”
Sethi maintained that it was a 10-over league and he does not know from where people were bringing this thing, but the PCB will not release its players. “I don’t know what are they planning but I am not in contact with them,” Sethi concluded.
After having such strong views about a league which was in direct clash with the revenues of PSL, the PCB chairman was seen running from pillar to post to release Pakistani centrally contracted players to the dubious league. Exactly what made the change of hearts at the PCB? During this one month, only one development happened i.e. one of the owners of PSL franchise bought some share in the T10 league and Najam Sethi went an extra mile to do that one franchise a favour by releasing Pakistani first tier players to the T10 league without bidding thus making the entire process opaque.
The PCB’s 47th board meeting minutes reveal that in compliance with the guidelines given by the BoG, the PCB has approved its players to participate in T10 League in December, 2017, which was sanctioned by Emirates Cricket Board. “This approval was given after hectic deliberation with all stakeholders including sponsors of PSL to ensure that this decision does not impact the PSL. The PCB has also stood to gain financially as it has negotiated a fee of $400,000 to be paid by the organisers in lieu of issuance of NOCs to our players.”
Observers believe that if the PCB is to get $400,000 from the T10 league for sending its players then how this figure was reached? When no bidding was done to evaluate the share of PCB, how could Board strike such a deal to favour a private company?
Moreover, the PCB’s claim of 80 percent Pakistani ownership in the controversial T10 league has been belied by the documents obtained from the UAE that mention that an Indian millionaire Shajiul Mulk is the owner of the league. Moreover, most of the owners of T10 franchises are Indians, the documents reveal. The FZE documents say that the licence to do business to T-Ten Sports has been issued in the name of Shajiul Mulk. Even the agreement signed with the players and the T10 franchises declare Shajiul Mulk as the owner of the league. One of the agreements obtained by The News says: “T10 sports management FZE, an existing free zone entity, incorporated and existing under the laws of the Emirate of Dubai, United Arab Emirates, with its principal offices situated at Hamriyah Freezone Sharjah, being duly represented by Shajiul Mulk.”
Moreover, documents sent for sponsorship contain the ownership of different teams which too, to the disappointment of PCB, contain mostly Indians instead of Pakistanis. The league promoter is one Vinay D Vyas who too is an Indian, the documents state. The owners of Maratha Arabians are Pervaiz Khan and Sohail Khan, both are Indian. The owner of Bengal Tigers is Mohamed Morani, Indian filmmaker. Shafiul Mulk, an Indian, owns Karalites Kings. Sajan brothers and Neelish Bhatnagar are the owners of Gujarat Tigers. Afghan National Habib Khan is owner of Pakhtuns. Inzamamul Haq is listed as owner of Punjabi Legends. The above facts clearly belie PCB's claim of 80 percent Pakistani ownership in the T10 league.
From official document sent to sponsors earlier, Shajiul Mulk is mentioned as the league’s president, but he later became chairman of the league and owner of PSL franchise Karachi Kings joined as president. The entry of the Karachi Kings owner in the T10 league resulted in the change of hearts at the PCB as the board which had refused to send contracted players to the dubious league in its 45th meeting all of a sudden decided to send first tier players to a private league owned by Indians in its 47th meeting held on November 22.
The PCB was in a hurry to issue NOCs to the players who had central contracts because the franchise owners of the PSL had severe reservations on sending players to a private Indian league. Upon getting such a strong and harsh response from the PSL franchises owners, seniors at the PCB ,who had first refused to send players to the dubious league because it conflicted with the PSL’s revenues, later opted for voting on the issue, but at the end preferred tweeting the decision of supporting the T10 league. The PSL franchise owners are feeling uneasy at PCB’s decision because the T10 league is being held ahead of PSL and it is aimed at undermining the PSL which has now become a brand. The T10 league is being held on the same venue where Pakistan plans to hold PSL and allowing Pakistani players without any evaluation would only undermine the value of PSL.
Pakistani cricketers speak for T10 Cricket League
After the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB), celebrated Pakistani cricketers also rejected the negative and biased news, which was published in Jang Group’s daily ‘The News’, against T10 Cricket League.
Along with the chief selector of PCB Inzamam-ul-Haq, players and coaches like Waqar Younis, Azhar Mehmood, former test cricketer Haroon Rasheed, former cricketer Jalal Uddin, former skipper Salman Butt, and captain of Karachi Kings Imad Wasim stand in favor of T10 Cricket League.
While, Karachi Kings owner Salman Iqbal and Karachi Kings president Shahid Afridi also asked those doing negative propaganda against the league to support it in the best interest of the country.
“We should back T10/PCB and team owners. Let’s consider it like any other league in the world. Don’t try and spin it for your agendas. Pakistan comes first for all of us!” wrote Afridi on his Twitter account.
“Shahid hits a glorious six against Agenda Wallahs! Totally agreed!” said Chairman PCB Najam Sethi replying to Afridi’s tweet.
Chief selector PCB Inzamam-ul-Haq said, “T-10 is a new format and cricket will become faster. PSL matches in Karachi are also a good sign after all cricket is returning to the country,” he said.
Imad Wasim said: “T10 is going to be really good for Pakistani cricketers and the spectators. Lets promote T10. #nomorepersonalagendas”
Azhar Mehmood praised the efforts of T10 cricket, he said, “It is a short format like T20 cricket and gathering international players is a good thing.”
Speaking strongly on the potential positive impact of the T10 League, Waqar Younis said critics would be proven wrong.
“Once the league begins, those running smear campaign against it will immediately shut up,” said Waqar Younis.
Moreover, former skipper Salman Butt shared his best wishes to the stakeholders and the innovators of this league.
Former cricketer Jalal Uddin said, “The introduction of T10 cricket is a further short-form in cricket world and anyone who thinks that T10 will ruin the cricket so I totally disagree with that”, he said.
He also said that “T10 is the need of time, earlier when T-20 was introduced, so many negative propaganda was created but the popularity of the limited overs format succeed”, he concluded.
Dwayne Bravo replaces Kumar Sangakkara in upcoming T10 Cricket League
Dwayne Bravo will play in the first T10 Cricket League in Sharjah next week.
The West Indian all-rounder has been recruited by Maratha Arabians as a replacement for Kumar Sangakkara.
The franchise said Sangakkara had pulled out of the competition, which takes place from December 14 to 17, because of personal reasons.
The six-team tournament is the first to be played in a new, 10-over format, with matches scheduled to be completed within 90 minutes.
“It is a disappointment Kumar will not be with us during the tournament,” Virender Sehwag, the Arabians captain, said.
6 teams. 10 overs. 90 minutes.
The teams are arriving in style, filled with the greatest cricketers, all set to change the dimension of the game.
Watch the #DesertStorm, from December 14th-17th at the Sharjah Cricket Stadium. pic.twitter.com/vJC5YCbiMW
— T10 League (@T10LeagueTweets) November 27, 2017
“He is an invaluable asset for any side. We are equally fortunate to have a top-class all-rounder like Dwayne Bravo replace Kumar.”
Wasim Akram, the franchise’s mentor, said: “We are fortunate that we are able to replace an outstanding cricketer like Kumar with someone like Dwayne Bravo.
“Dwayne is one of the genuine all-rounders in limited-overs cricket who has really made a mark for himself.
"I am sure Dwayne will add a lot of value to the side. We welcome him into the franchise with a lot of excitement.”
PCB drags in T20 Global League to defend T-Ten League
KARACHI: In another desperate attempt to defend the controversial T-Ten League and cover-up own blunders, the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) has dragged Cricket South Africa’s product Global T-20 League into the issue.
While comparing the privately owned league with an official league of an ICC board member, PCB says that the two franchises were allowed to invest in T20GL and the same way one was allowed to be part of T-ten league.
PCB, on its official media announcement twitter handle (@TheRealPCBMedia), responded to The News story published on December 12th.
“PCB gave clearance to Lahore Qalandars & Peshawar Zalmi to participate/field teams in SA Global League on the same lines Karachi Kings/ARY were given clearance for T10, all franchises hold equal importance for PCB,” states PCB in the tweet.
It is worth mentioning that the Global T20 league was owned by Cricket South Africa, unlike the T-Ten league, which is owned by a private businessman.
One wonders how a competent cricket authority like PCB can compare the two leagues.
The PCB’s statement of naming three different franchises may also create bitterness among PSL franchise owners ahead of PSL’s third edition and can harm the atmosphere of the league.
One must not forget the fact that the franchise Karachi Kings was also among the PSL franchises to raise its voice against the T-Ten league, but later became a partner of the same league.
PCB continues to add that it can’t block the opportunity for players or coaches to earn extra, especially in a free window.
“We can't block the opportunity for our players/coaches to make an extra earning especially in a free window (Where there is no conflict of interest) T10 is only a four-day commitment and has given good financial gains to both the players and PCB,” it states.
The PCB, it seems, find the prestigious first-class tournament Quaid-e-Azam Trophy not worthy enough to ensure top players’ participation in it.
By allowing players to participate in a non-serious league, the PCB has also risked their fitness ahead of an important tour of New Zealand.
Meanwhile, the spokesperson of the Jang Group in a statement said, “The leadership of the PCB through a press release tried to hide behind Aman Ki Asha and media conflicts narrative instead of replying to the question regarding lack of transparency and due process that Usman Manzoor’s reports bring up. The group fully supports PSL by sponsoring multiple teams and promotion and also provides space for it in its sports channel as done by PTV and Ten Sports, but charges lower fees than both".
"If anything, the reporting of Usman Manzoor is in the protection of PSL. We do not have anything against any competitor starting a league or even an Indian, but Aman Ki Asha does not mean that we should sell state-affiliated assets for free and do it without due diligence and due process. It is for the information of PCB that Aman Ki Asha, showing of Indian films and promotion of IPL are legal under the Pakistani laws but sending PCB’s assets i.e. rights of players to play a league, without bidding is not," added the spokesperson for Jang Group.
T10 League 2017: What's a good score in 10 overs on a Sharjah surface that favours neither batsmen or bowlers?
Cricket might be set for a bright new dawn in Sharjah this week, when the first tournament is played in the format of 10-overs-per side. Or T10 cricket might just be consigned straight to the file marked: “Well, it seemed a good idea at the time …”
Only time will really tell. The creators of it have ambitions for it to go global, spawning leagues of similar length elsewhere, and for matches to be played between the leading teams at international level.
Those are bolder ambitions than Twenty20 ever had when it was set up as a bid to win back families, as well as new supporters, to English county cricket 14 years ago. And look what has happened there.
The T10 League, taking place at Sharjah Cricket Stadium from December 14 to 17, has solid financial backing. Some of the leading players in the game, including five current international captains, are playing. So what can we expect?
How many runs will be scored?
Clearly, it is difficult to know what a good score will be in T10. When the first official innings of T20 took place in England in 2003, Hampshire scored 153.
No-one knew whether that was good, bad, or indifferent, but it felt like a lot at the time. Even 14 years on, that would probably pass as a par score in T20 on many grounds, particularly if the pitch is slow, as in Sharjah.
The most rudimentary gauge for predicting a decent 10-over score might be just to halve the standard T20 score. Of course, batsmen will now be looking to minimise the time used up on dot balls and singles even further than they do already in the 20-over game, but presumably the bowlers will have a few tricks stored up, too.
Will the scoring rate per delivery be much greater than in T20? It remains to be seen.
Is Sharjah a high scoring ground?
Traditionally Sharjah is regarded as tough for bowlers, given the rock-hard, bone-dry nature of the central wicket. However, scoring is not that easy, either, with the general characteristics of a low bounce and slow outfield.
The 12 T20 internationals that have been played there to date have seen 3,339 runs scored off 2,783 balls, which is a run-rate of 1.19 per delivery that is bowled. In a 10-over match, that would equate to a total of around 72.
It is a generally consistent tally for T20 matches in Sharjah. In matches played there during the 2016 Pakistan Super League, 2,500 runs were scored off 2,076 balls – so 1.2 per ball. Translating directly to 10 overs, that is also around 72.
Who might be the players to watch?
Well, Mohammed Amir was the first draft pick. Those who did the recruiting at Maratha Arabians believe the Pakistan pace bowler’s thriftiness, as proved in T20 cricket over the past two years in particular, will be crucial.
“I think is that T10 will be all about bowling,” Wasim Akram, the Arabians’ team mentor, said. “The best team will be the team with the better bowling attack. That is why Amir was the pick, because he bowls a good yorker, and he has got pace.”
Dougie Brown, the Arabians’ coach, said: “He is an outstanding death bowler, and you would suggest that in a 10-over competition, two overs per bowler is going to be two overs of death.”
Elsewhere, Imad Wasim is miserly with the ball, and can hit big with the bat. Fakhar Zaman was the first batsman picked, which is a nod to his remarkable emergence over the past two years. Carlos Brathwaite has six appeal. Alex Hales will be wanting to return to form on the cricket field. There is no shortage of stars.
Is it creating interest?
There has certainly been a buzz about the new format, not least because many of the leading Pakistani players are involved. The organisers are confident Sharjah Stadium will be packed.
The absence of any Indians of note, other than Virender Sehwag, means a sizable chunk of the potential market are barely aware of the format’s existence, though.
And retaining interest on the match days could be a struggle. The idea behind 10-over matches was that they will be completed within 90 minutes, along similar lines to other major international sports like football and rugby.
When the fixtures were released for the opening tournament, though, there were four matches listed per day – meaning seven-and-a-half-hour days.
From the evidence of the past in the PSL – and even at football’s ongoing Fifa Club World Cup in Abu Dhabi – double headers can be a tough sell.
Enthusiasm for one match can turn to ambivalence – and then absence – for the other, and thus empty seats. If that is the case for two matches back-to-back, then what about four?
Despite teething problems T10 Cricket League organisers have plans to expand competition in Season 2
Organisers of the T10 Cricket League already have plans to expand the event next year, despite some opposition facing the tournament’s launch.
The first four-day, six-team competition in a new 10-overs-per-side format will start at Sharjah Cricket Stadium on Thursday.
The tournament will star the likes of Virender Sehwag, Shahid Afridi, Eoin Morgan and Sarfraz Ahmed.
The Dubai-based businessmen who have set up the competition have big plans for it, including staging competitions in established cricket countries elsewhere, as well as the United States in the future.
They have a 10-year agreement to stage matches at grounds in the UAE. In exchange, UAE cricketers are set to benefit. Two players have been recruited to each of five franchises this season.
In the 2018 version, which is planned to have eight franchises, there are due to be four UAE-based players per squad, with at least two guaranteed to start in each XI.
6 teams. 10 overs. 90 minutes.
The teams are arriving in style, filled with the greatest cricketers, all set to change the dimension of the game.
Watch the #DesertStorm, from December 14th-17th at the Sharjah Cricket Stadium. pic.twitter.com/vJC5YCbiMW
— T10 League (@T10LeagueTweets) November 27, 2017
The lead up to the debut season has not been without issues, though. Leading Pakistan cricketers have been given consent to play in the competition by their country’s board.
However, the Pakistan Cricket Board had reportedly been wary of the effects the new competition might have, both on its players, and even on the popularity of the Pakistan Super League, the T20 competition due to be partly staged in the UAE in February.
Furthermore, a number of players selected in the initial draft, which was staged on a yacht in Dubai Marina last month, have since pulled out.
Kumar Sangakkara, one of the first players named as part of the new project, dropped out citing personal reasons.
He has been replaced in the Maratha Arabians squad by Dwayne Bravo. Punjabi Legends have replaced Rangana Herath with Ravi Bopara.
Bengal Tigers have been the worst affected franchise, with as many as six of their original squad unable to play in Sharjah this weekend.
That includes each of their first two draft picks, Sunil Narine and Mustafizur Rahman.
T10 League 2017: Meet the teams
What: T10 League 2017
When: December 14 to 17, at Sharjah Cricket Stadium
December 14 - 6pm, opening ceremony, followed by:
Bengal Tigers v Kerala Kings
Maratha Arabians v Pakhtoons
Bengal Tigers v Punjabi Legends, 4pm
Maratha Arabians v Team Sri Lanka, 6pm
Punjab Legends v Kerala Kings, 8pm
Pakhtoons v Team Sri Lanka, 10pm
1st in Group A v 3rd in Group B, 4pm
3rd in Group A v 1st in Group B, 6pm
2nd v Group A v 2nd in Group B, 8pm
5/6th place playoff, 10pm
5.30pm, 1st semi-final – Team 1 v Team 4, followed by second semi-final and final
Tickets: Available online at q-tickets.com/t10 and at branches of UAE Exchange, Al Fardan Exchange, Al Ghurair Exchange, Leopards Courier, and Karachi Darbar.
Mohammed Amir, centre, is expected to be the star player of this season's T10 League. KM Chaudary / AP Photo
Leading player: Virender Sehwag (India) - The only Indian player of note in the league, Sehwag has not played since the Masters Champions League in the UAE last year.
Top pick: Mohammed Amir (Pakistan) - The storied left-arm pace bowler was the first player recruited at the draft, on a yacht in Dubai Marina last month.
UAE hopeful: Zahoor Khan. Shaiman Anwar, the UAE's most experienced batsman, is the other locally-based Arabians player, but seamer Zahoor might have more chances.
The T10 League will provide Mohammed Naveed the big stage he needs to showcase his talent. Satish Kumar / The National
Leading player: Sarfraz Ahmed (Pakistan) - Sarfraz has not played many significant innings of late. Most things he has done as captain have turned to gold, though.
Late pick: David Miller (South Africa) - Sunil Narine was the first draft pick for Bengal. When he opted out, they managed to secure a high-pedigree - if not like for like - replacement in David Miller.
UAE hopeful: Mohammed Naveed. The pace bowler has the best T20 international economy rate of anyone apart from Afghanistan’s Rashid Khan in the past two years.
Eoin Morgan will take whatever practice he can get ahead of the ODI series in Australia. Reuters
Leading player: Eoin Morgan (England) - En route to Australia where he will captain England’s limited-overs team, he will get his eye in in Sharjah first.
Top pick: Kieron Pollard (West Indies) - The Trinidadian strongman has made a career out of pyrotechnic cameos in the shortest formats of the game
UAE hopeful: Rohan Mustafa. A major force behind the national team’s remarkable renaissance in 2017, Mustafa is looking forward to playing for his hero, Morgan.
Shahid Afridi, right, of Hampshire celebrates his century with James Vince during the T20 Blast at The 3aaa County Ground on August 22, 2017 in Derby, England. Nigel Roddis / Getty Images
Leading player: Shahid Afridi (Pakistan) - It almost feels as though Afridi’s retirement was so keenly felt, they invented a new format just to keep him going.
Top pick: Fakhar Zaman (Pakistan) - Now world renown thanks to his Champions Trophy exploits with Pakistan, but he first forged his name on these pitches in the PSL.
UAE hopeful: Amjad Javed. The pace bowler was stellar for the UAE in the Asia Cup T20 in Bangladesh last year. Now back on a similar stage, he could thrive.
UAE batsman Ghulam Shabber, right, will represent Pakhtoons at the T10 League 2017. Nezar Balout for The National
Leading player: Shoaib Malik (Pakistan) - Despite his indifferent time as a captain in PSL, Malik was trusted to lead the Punjabi side in the first T10.
Top pick: Hasan Ali (Pakistan) - The top ranked one-day international bowler in the world, and a savvy practitioner in UAE conditions.
UAE hopeful: Ghulam Shabber. The powerful left-handed wicket-keeper batsman has been in fine form with the bat for the UAE in his debut season.
Dinesh Chandimal will lead the Team Sri Lanka side at the T10 League 2017 in the UAE. Altaf Qadri / AP Photo
Team Sri Lanka Cricket
The side will be led by Dinesh Chandimal, and made up exclusively of players from Sri Lanka.
Former PCB Chairman Shahryar Khan terms T-10 league 'a circus'
KARACHI: Pakistan Cricket Board's former chairman Shahryar Khan has termed the T-10 league a 'circus', saying the PCB should not have supported the idea of having this league.
Speaking on Geo Super program 'Bolain Kia Baat Hai' on Monday evening, the former chairman added that PCB shouldn't have compromised on the sanctity of cricket for commercial temptation.
"My personal opinion is that this is a circus and not good for cricket. It will demean the game of cricket," Shahryar said.
"Not good to give importance to commercial factors at the cost of cricket. They pay US$400,000 or a million dollars, T-10 is wrong in principle and we shouldn't have supported it," he added.
The Pakistan Cricket Board in a recent statement agreed that it charged a fee of US$400,000 for giving NOC to its contracted players for the tournament which starts in Sharjah on December 14.
The former PCB head also added that it is wrong to say that disallowing players would have affected our terms with ECB because they earn so much from PCB.
Shahryar Khan also criticised the ICC for not doing enough for protection of cricket's purity.
"How long you will allow cricket to be degraded? You need to protect the sanctity and purity of cricket. This is our responsibility because commercialism has already damaged the essence of the game too much. You shouldn't agree with every commercial temptation," he said.
He also agreed with the observation that the T-10 league can also damage Pakistan's own product, the Pakistan Super League.
"I believe that this will surely damage the PSL franchises. PCB must not have ignored their apprehension. PSL should be our priority," he stated.
Sharjah Stadium set for new records through T10 League
Sharjah: Sharjah Cricket Stadium, which figures in the Guinness Books of World Records for hosting the maximum number of One Day International matches, is set to add another feather in their cap by becoming the first venue to stage the innovative T10 tournament with a host of top international cricketers from December 14-17.
Huge banners have come up around the ground with red carpet already laid out to welcome the star international cricketers. The venue has been spruced up with lights while IPL-type music will be blaring to entertain the crowd during intervals.
The team owners are busy making special arrangements for the team’s fans with T-shirts and flags of the teams that will be distributed to the fans have arrived to create huge visual impact. The wickets for the matches have been specially prepared to ensure tall scores within the limited overs.
Speaking to Gulf News, Mazhar Khan, General Manager of the Sharjah Cricket Club, said: “The wickets have been prepared in such a way to help big hitting. We have selected the pitches in such a way that cricketers will be able to entertain the crowd through some lusty hitting.”
Special care has been given to the outfield as players are likely to throw themselves to prevent runs as every run will count in this shortest format of the game. “The ground is in excellent shape. We have been watering the outfield in such a way that grass is smooth and hence the outfield is looking very good.”
Shahid Afridi, the captain of the Pakhtoons team, who has attracted huge crowd to this venue, said: “Sharjah has always been a special venue. As soon I was told about T10 cricket, I got thrilled and I immediately said that I want to play it.”
Following Indian skipper Mahendra Singh Dhoni’s suggestion to use white ball instead of the pink ball, the organisers have got white kookaburra balls. As the event will be telecast around the world, the organisers have also got branded zing (LED) bails.
Shaji-Ul Mulk, the chairman of the T10 Cricket League, said: “To pass on the excitement from Sharjah to other parts of the world we will have the best commentators giving commentary. Danny Morrison, Dean Jones and Rameez Raja are among the commentators. The matches are being telecast by OSN to 93 countries with a possible audience of two billion people.
Shoaib Malek, who will captain Punjab Legends, holds the record for the second highest score in T20 Internationals at this venue. He hit 75 runs off 54 balls against in November 2015, though Afghanistan’s Mohammad Shahid holds the record for the highest score in T20 when he cracked an unbeaten 118 off 67 balls against Zimbabwe in January 2016.
T10 brings youth to stadiums: Misbah
Pakistan former skipper, Misbah ul Haq has stated that the inaugural T10 League, is an experiment to popularize cricket among masses.
“The T-Ten cricket is a sequel of the same series that will provide entertainment for people who are now feeling exhausted in the three-hour T20. The main purpose of this type of cricket is to bring fans into stadiums in a large number,” said Misbah, quoted BBC Urdu.
Pakistan’s most successful Test captain, was of the view that the ICC approval of the T10 format, depends upon the success of the inaugural event in UAE, which would then decide the future of such leagues. Misbah will play for the Punjab Legends, alongside teammates Shoaib Malik and Umar Akmal.
Some six teams would participate in the three day event at Sharjah Cricket Stadium will feature cricketers from all over the world. The tournament will be played from 14th till 17th December with a round robin followed by semifinals and the final.
T10 will bring in new surprises
Pakistan T20 specialist, Sohail Tanvir has expressed that the game latest format, the upcoming T10 League would allow players to bring in new strategies into the game.
“In T10 cricket, only those who come up with new approaches and surprise packages would be successful,” stated Tanvir, in an interview to local media.
Tanvir, would represent the Kerala Kings under the leadership of England’s Eoin Morgan and mentor-ship of the legendary Brian Lara.
In a question, Pakistan fast bowler replied that one needs to be innovative in order to sustain his career in today’s cricket.
“Cricket has already become challenging for a bowler, whether you look at T20 or ODI, Test cricket though remains a bit different. However, you have to come up with new ways in the game otherwise, you would turn predictable,” said Tanvir.
The T10 League is schedule to begin from tomorrow (Thursday) at the Sharjah Cricket Stadium, UAE.
Mohammed Amir determined to learn from 'idol' Wasim Akram
T10 Cricket League
Sharjah Cricket Stadium
December 14- 17
6pm, Opening ceremony, followed by:
Bengal Tigers v Kerala Kings
Maratha Arabians v Pakhtoons
Tickets available online at q-tickets.com/t10
Mohammed Amir says he wants to repay the faith shown in him by Wasim Akram and his franchise owners by bowling Maratha Arabians to success in the first T10 League.
The Pakistan pace bowler was the first player selected at the draft for the tournament at the start of November, a move large decided by Wasim, the Arabians’ team mentor.
Wasim believes the 12 balls Amir sends down per match will be crucial to laying a platform for success in the competition, which starts at Sharjah Cricket Stadium on Thursday evening.
The Arabians will play in the second match, against a Pakhtoons side that includes the likes of Shahid Afridi, Fakhar Zaman and Ahmed Shahzad.
Although the first 10-over league will be a step into the unknown for all involved, Amir said he is already feeling the weight of expectation.
“Lots of people are involved in this,” Amir said. “Lots of people's money is involved in this. Lots of people's passion is involved in this. There is media pressure. There is crowd pressure.
“So this is totally different. You can't take it all that lightly. You can definitely enjoy it - cricket is meant to be enjoyed. But you have come here to play and perform.
“Franchises have paid you. You have to play for their passion, for their love [of the game]. You have to play for your respect, too. But it will be fun.”
Amir is grateful for the backing of Wasim, as well as the chance to work with him over the course of the week.
“I am excited to spend time with him,” Amir said of the former Pakistan left-arm fast-bowler.
“It's for four days, so I want to learn as much as I can from him. He has been my idol. I have looked up to him. I am hoping to learn from him during practice.
“This has been a good year for me. We [Pakistan] won the Champions Trophy. Then I played for Essex county for whom I performed well. And by the grace of God, I became a father. This has been my life's biggest blessing.”
Wasim Akram, centre, speaks to players during a Maratha Arabians training session. Courtesy Maratha Arabians
A number of the teams are much changed since the draft took place. One franchise, Bengal Tigers, have undergone a frantic week of recruitment after six of their original picks subsequently signaled their unavailability.
Amir’s team also lost one of their stars, Kumar Sangakkara, whose image still adorns much of the signage surrounding the stadium and on billboards around UAE.
They managed to sign a high-pedigree replacement, though, after securing the services of Dwayne Bravo, the former West Indies all-rounder who is one of the world’s most experienced Twenty20 players.
Bravo was not initially available at the draft. He had wanted a break between playing at the Bangladesh Premier League earlier this month, and before going to Australia to play in the Big Bash League.
“I got some good news in the middle of the BPL that Sangakkara was pulling out, and that they were looking for a replacement,” Bravo said.
“I was asked if I’d have any interest, and obviously I would like to be part of history. This was the first T10 tournament, and in a beautiful country.
“It [T10] will be a batsman’s game. Most teams pick me for my bowling, and again I have to test my skills and ability. I am looking forward to it because it will be fun, but also very competitive.”
Wrong to judge new format so quickly, says Morgan
(MENAFN - Khaleej Times) Like any new project, there are bound to be a few teething problems and it does take a bit of time for things to take shape and fall in place.
And England's limited-overs captain Eoin Morgan felt that it would be wrong to make a judgement on cricket's newest format - T10 - so quickly. Morgan is one of marquee players to have given a massive endorsement to the T10 League which plays out at the historic Sharjah Cricket Stadium over the weekend. Six franchises - Bengal Tigers, Kerala Kings, Maratha Arabians, Pakhtoons, Punjabi Legends and Team Sri Lanka are taking part in the inaugural edition of the competition.
The League has drawn a number of top players from India, England, West Indies, Pakistan, Bangladesh, South Africa, Afghanistan, The Netherlands, Hong Kong, Sri Lanka, apart from the hosts UAE.
But some stars like West Indian Chris Gayle, South Africa's AB de Villiers and New Zealand's Brendon McCullum are missing. Sri Lanka's Kumar Sangakkara pulled out of the tournament because of personal reasons.
Morgan, who has plied his trade for various franchises like Royal Challengers Bangalore, Kings XI Punjab, Kolkata Knight Riders and Sunrisers Hyderabad in the Indian Premier League, Barbados Tridents in the Caribbean Premier League, Peshawar Zalmi in the Pakistan Super League and Sydney Thunder in the Australian Big Bash League, said that the T10 was the start of something exciting.
"It is the start of something new which I think excites everybody," said Morgan. "The concept of such a tournament that is started and finished within four days is unheard of in cricket. And I think if you were to play a tournament between 10 and 12 teams, you could probably finish it in 10 days. I think that makes it viable as an Olympic sport so, hopefully, the tournament will be a success and we will be able to take it all around the world and not just here in Sharjah. So, it is exciting to see how it goes," he added.
The 31-year-old said the League, being staged under the aegis of the Emirates Cricket Board (ECB) and given official sanction by the International Cricket Council (ICC), has managed to draw some top quality players.
"I think you have a lot of high quality international cricketers. With the draft going the way it did, every team is full of international superstars. And as with how any league goes, it is important for those superstars to perform in order for the League to do well," he said. "Like I mentioned, this is the first year of it all happening. The first year of T20 cricket, you didn't have all the superstars and all the big names. You had normal, domestic cricketers and not necessarily even the international stars that were playing in England at that time. And that went on to be a success. So, it is very early days," Morgan added.
The turnaround times have been quick and that has meant that players haven't had much time to get to know each other. Morgan said that was the nature of the format was added it wasn't an obstacle.
"We have not had much time to gel. That's the essence of such a short tournament and I think talking to some of the founding members of the tournament, they are not just keen to have one a year, maybe take it around the world and go on from there. So, it is like any T20 tournament you play around the world. I've played with some of the guys in Barbados, Kolkata, different guys and I know them quite well," said Morgan.
'T10 could be route to Olympics'
MENAFN - Khaleej Times) West Indies T20 World Cup-winning captain Darren Sammy said that it was time to embrace the newest format of cricket and felt the abridged version to T10 could be the route to the Olympics.
The 33-year-old globetrotter has featured in a number of T20 Leagues like the Indian Premier League (IPL), the Australian Big Bash (BBL), the Caribbean Premier League (CPL), the Pakistan Super League (PSL) and the Bangladesh Premier League (BPL).
He has played for teams like Sunrisers Hyderabad, Royal Challengers Bangalore and Kings XI Punjab in the IPL, Hobart Hurricanes in the Big Bash, St Lucia Stars in the CPL, Peshawar Zalmi in the PSL and Rajshahi Kings in the BPL. And now, it is set to be a first with Sammy having signed up for the sport's most abridged format - T10.
The inaugural T10 League takes place at the historic Sharjah Cricket Stadium from Thursday until Sunday. Six franchises are taking part in the competition with matches lasting just 90 minutes. Sammy will ply his trade for the Bengal Tigers, captained by Pakistan skipper Sarfraz Ahmed. Sammy, who led the West Indies to World T20 titles in 2012 and 2016, felt that the latest version could be the ideal format to make it to the Olympics. "I'm actually looking forward to it," said Sammy.
"It is a new venture in the game and it is one that I believe will really take off. It has potential to be big. And we always talk about cricket in the Olympics and I think 10 overs a side could be the window for cricket being in the Olympics," he added.
Cricket was played at the Olympics for the first and only time in 1900 in Paris with only two teams - Great Britain and France participating. Since then, there have been efforts to include the sport but there has been opposition from some quarters. Sammy that it was important that the players and the fans embrace cricket's evolution and felt the new format has a bright future. "Like I said, it could create a window. We all have got to embrace it. It is much shorter, an hour and a half, bowlers going hard at the batsmen and batsmen trying to hit the bowlers out of the park. It is non-stop adrenaline pumping, and like I said, it is important for us to embrace it."
And my job is to entertain and hopefully we get to do that. But I feel it could go a long way," he said.
As is the case with most cricket Leagues around the world the West Indies have a strong presence with a number of players picked for the T10.
"I think we have a number of West Indian players. In all the teams, you can see two or three West Indian players playing. In total, I think we have atleast 12 players from the West Indies in the T10. As you can see in the recent T20s, the guys are improving and you get the entertainment from all over. I just think this short format creates that opportunity, the crowd loves it. Hopefully, this one could be successful," Sammy said.
TTen eyes the 'perfect 10'
(MENAFN - Khaleej Times) Some 7,194 kilometres away from Lord's, the home of cricket, a revolution is about to take place at the Sharjah Cricket Stadium, a venue steeped in history.
Revolution, perhaps, may be too strong a word, or one with negative connotations, but if the next four days pans out the way it should, the cricketing landscape could change forever.
Shaji Ul Mulk's idea and dream is close to being a reality with the T10 League, the sport's most abridged version, set to put its wheels on and take cricket fans for an adrenaline-fuelled ride at the historic Sharjah Cricket Stadium over the four days.
Cricket has its purists who still love the ebbs and flows of a Test match over five days. And then there are those who grew up with 50 overs. The T20s changed the ball game altogether but now a new 'kid,' so to speak, is right around the block. T10 could perhaps be termed the evolution of cricket and another medium through which to attract new fans to the sport. Unlike other formats of cricket which have different time frames, T10 will be done and dusted in just 90 minutes, the same time frame of a football game.
And in this day and era of different leagues, it is tailor-made for franchise cricket. Add to that, the razzmatazz of cheer leaders, music and the works, it is that heady blend of cricket and entertainment - cricktainment.
Since the idea slowly took shape, a plethora of cricketers from around the globe sat up and took notice. And realising that they could be part of something that could change the face of cricket and maybe be part of history, they have given the thumbs up and signed up for it.
And there couldn't have been a better example than England's Eoin Morgan to illustrate this point. The fact that the England limited-overs captain has agreed to be a part of this venture, says a lot.
Morgan is not the only one. Sarfraz Ahmed, Pakistan's captain across all the three formats, is also a part of it apart from stalwarts from yesteryears - India's Virender Sehwag, Pakistan's former captain Misbah
Haq and Shahid Afridi.
The play list also has some top names like West Indian Darren Sammy, a two-time T20 World Cup-winning captain, David Miller, Kieron Pollard, Shakib Al Hasan, Wahab Riaz, Ryan Ten Doeschate, Mohammad Amir, Alex Hales, Dwayne Bravo, Rilee Roussouw, Kamran Akmal, Fakhar Zaman, Dwayne Smith, Umar Gul, Shoaib Malik, Chris Jordan, Umar Akmal, Carols Braithwaite and a Sri Lankan team led by Dinesh Chandimal. Six teams -Bengal Tigers, Kerala Kings, Maratha Arabians, Pakhtoons, Punjabi Legends and Team Sri Lanka are taking part in the competition.
The support staff across the six franchises, have some top names like Waqar Younis, who is the coach of the Bengal Tigers and physio John Gloster, formerly with the Indian team. Kerala Kings have former Indian all-rounder Robin Singh, who was also India's fielding coach and India 'A' coach, apart from stints in the IPL with the Deccan Chargers and the Mumbai Indians. The Maratha Arabians have the 'Sultan of Swing' Wasim Akram as coach, while Moin Khan is the coach of the Pakhtoons. Mushtaq Ahmed is the coach of the Punjabi Legends.
The next four days will be a walk into the unknown but with the hope that the sport's latest 'baby' will spawn a new future.
PSL franchises concerned over Pakistan players in T10 League
A number of Pakistan Super League (PSL) franchises have raised concerns over the PCB's decision to allow contracted players to play in the T10 League, which starts in the UAE on Thursday.
The franchises fear the league could emerge as a potential threat to the value of the PSL itself. A central point in their concern also revolves around Salman Iqbal, owner of the Karachi Kings franchise, who is president of the T10 League and whose broadcast company is part of the management, while Quetta Gladiators owner Nadeem Omar was not allowed permission by the PCB to launch his own league in association with the Emirates Cricket Board (ECB).
Current PSL champions Peshawar Zalmi owner Javed Afridi was most trenchant in his criticism, who as champions have the most to lose if the PSL is adversely affected. "It's the PCB's responsibility to improve the PSL and protect the stake of Pakistan cricket," Afridi told ESPNcricinfo.
"Franchises are not the rights holders of the league but we are the important entity running the show and signed to do so for ten years. We worked so hard to build this brand collectively. If the PCB will not protect our interest, then who will?
"How can the PCB undermine its own league and kill the hype of its own tournament by allowing top contracted players to play in another league taking place at the same venue just a month earlier? It might work well for some individuals but it does not help Pakistan cricket at all. There is a value of our players and you cannot sell out our players in bulk. There is a big possibility it will come back to bite us."
PCB chairman Najam Sethi had broached the subject first in a routine meeting with PSL stakeholders last month. He reportedly asked each team if they had any concerns, only to found out that a majority of the teams did. A basic presentation by Iqbal was rebutted by Islamabad United owner Ali Naqvi, while Lahore Qalandars questioned the support given to a league mainly backed by non-Pakistani investors.
During another meeting, there was a suggestion that a vote be carried out to determine a future course of action, only for the idea to be dropped after the majority of franchises expressed reservations in allowing players to participate in the T10 League. Sethi, however, had the authority to take the final decision as PCB chairman, and allowed players to participate. He assured teams that they would continue to monitor the T10 League and promised the PCB would withdraw its support should the PSL be threatened.
A PCB spokesman said the PCB had been assured there was "no conflict of interest with the PSL". He also said the date of the T10 tournament had been changed from February to December after the PCB said the former was not acceptable to them. "The organisers wanted the PCB to issue NOCs to Pakistan players free of cost, like it's done for other boards. But since no reciprocity was involved in their case, the PCB demanded a hefty fee in exchange and obtained $400,000."
Lahore Qalandars - as well as Peshawar - also confirmed that they were indirectly approached at a very early stage in the inception of the league and offered to become a party in it. But the business proposition was turned down because it was understood to be counter-productive to their brand. Iqbal was himself initially against allowing Pakistan players in the T10 League.
"There are genuine concerns raised by a majority of PSL teams and the issue needs to be sorted with due diligence," a Qalandars official told ESPNcricinfo. "Allowing marquee players into other leagues that have the potential to undermine the PSL is a point of concern."
Quetta's owner, meanwhile, had been seeking permission from the PCB to buy a team in the Emirates League in the UAE but had not received permission. During the meeting, the owner of Gladiators didn't object to supporting the T10 League, but underlined the PCB's "double standard" in not allowing one owner to buy a team, and discouraging another for associating with other leagues in the UAE.
Not least of the impacts of the league will be that the final round of Pakistan's premier first-class tournament, the Quaid-e-Azam Trophy, will be played without a number of big names who will be playing in the UAE this weekend. Pakistan players in the T10 League include Sarfraz Ahmed, Shahid Afridi, Misbah-ul-Haq, Mohammad Amir, Kamran Akmal, Umar Akmal and Hasan Ali.
The final QeA round begins on December 15 with eight teams competing for a place in the final.
T10 League: Final squads confirmed by the six franchises
The final squads for the first T10 League have been confirmed by the six franchises.
They contain a variety of changes since the initial draft took place at the start of November, with the likes of Kumar Sangakkara, Sunil Narine and Mustafizur Rahman having since withdrawn.
The competition, which starts in Sharjah on Thursday, is the first to be played in a 10-overs per team.
Sarfraz Ahmed (captain), David Miller, Marchant de Lange, Darren Sammy, Aamer Yamin, Darren Bravo, Andre Fletcher, Mohammed Nawaz, Tom Kohler-Cadmore, Anwar Ali, Johnson Charles, Cameron Delport, Mohammed Naveed, Rameez Shahzad, Mujeeb Zadran, Zahir Khan.
Eoin Morgan (captain), Kieron Pollard, Sohail Tanvir, Shakib Al Hasan, Liam Plunkett, Wahab Riaz, Chadwick Walton, Paul Stirling, Samuel Badree, Nicholas Pooran, Rayad Emrit, Ryan ten Doeschate, Rohan Mustafa, Imran Haider, Babar Hayat.
Virender Sehwag (captain), Mohammed Amir, Imad Wasim, Alex Hales, Mohammed Sami, Lendl Simmons, Dwayne Bravo, Rilee Rossouw, Hardus Viljoen, Kamran Akmal, Roelof van der Merwe, Krishmar Santokie, Shaiman Anwar, Zahoor Khan, Ross Whiteley, Asghar Stanikzai.
Shahid Afridi (captain), Fakhar Zaman, Tamim Iqbal, Dwayne Smith, Ahmed Shahzad, Imran Khan, Mohammed Irfan, Mohammed Nabi, Sohail Khan, Umar Gul, Liam Dawson, Najibullah Zadran, Amjad Javed, Saqlain Haider, Shaheen Afridi, Shafiqullah.
Shoaib Malik (captain), Hasan Ali, Chris Jordan, Umar Akmal, Carlos Brathwaite, Luke Ronchi, Adil Rashid, Misbah-ul-Haq, Fahim Ashraf, Abdul Razzaq, Ravi Bopara, Dawlat Zadran, Shareef Asadullah, Ghulam Shabber, Usama Mir.
Team Sri Lanka Cricket
Dinesh Chandimal (captain), Dilshan Munweera, Shehan Jayasuriya, Kithruwan Vithanage, Angelo Perera, Sachita Senanayake, Kasun Madushanka, Alankara Asanka, Wanidu Hasaranga, Vishwa Fernando, Bhanuka Rajapakse, Ramith Rambukwella, Lahiru Madushanka, Thiksala de Silva, Shehan Madushanka.
T10 star cricketers reach out to communities
Sharjah: Top international cricketers, who will be in action during the T10 Cricket League to be held at the Sharjah Stadium from December 14-17, are reaching out to the various communities that they will be representing.
As the tournament is slated to be a contest of supporters of the South Asian communities, star cricketers in the six teams are keen to ignite the fervour among the fans for their teams — calling them to come out in large number to cheer for their teams.
The six teams of the league are Colombo Kings, Bengal Tigers, Maratha Arabians, Punjab Legends, Pakhtoons and Kerala Kings.
England skipper Eoin Morgan, who will lead Kerala Kings, is hoping that the large number of Keralites in the UAE will cheer up for his team. Morgan has revealed that he wants to play the T10 format due to a special reason. “When T20 was launched I was not old enough to be a part of the first year of T20 cricket. I want to be part of the first T10 tournament. It will be something really special,” said Morgan.
Punjab Legends and Pakhtoons are hoping that all Pakistan supporters turn up for their matches.
Shahid Afridi, who will lead the Pakhtoons team, has always been the hero of the Sharjah Cricket Stadium fans.
“I am fit and you all can see me in action during the T10 league. I am still enjoying playing and so my Sharjah fans will not miss me,” said Afridi.
In fact, cricket-loving blue-collar workers living in the various labour camps are planning to turn up in large numbers for the event at Sharjah Stadium. After T10 organisers staged a tournament for the labourers, excitement to watch T10 matches have spread fast. Farrukh Hussain, who won the player of the tournament award cracking a whirlwind 92 off 34 balls in T10 tournament for labourers, has expressed his desire to receive the award from Afridi.
Danube Construction Company, who are the co-owners of the Bengal Tigers team, will be creating a separate section for the workers to come, wear their team jerseys and cheer for their team.
Pakistan captain Safraz Ahmad, who will lead the Bengal Tigers, said: “The colour of our team jersey represents passion, pride and glory. We will hunt our opposition like Tigers.” In fact, Pakistan pacer Shoaib Akthar has pledged his support for Sarfraz and his team.
Maratha Arabians captain Virender Sehwag has urged all fans to turn up in large numbers.
“It will be exciting cricket. Cricket should be entertaining and all my life I have played the game to entertain and this is the right format for such cricket,” said Sehwag. The fact that Maratha Arabians will be coached by legendary Pakistan pacer Wasim Akram has put Pakistan supporters in a dilemma on which team to support.
All Sri Lankans clubs in the UAE, meanwhile, are expected to turn up and cheer for Dinesh Chandimal-led Team Sri Lanka.
‘We want T10 format to spread around the world’
Sharjah: Shaji Ul Mulk, the chairman of the T10 cricket league, who visualised this unique format, is focused on what impact his league can create in the long run. The UAE, which had stunned the world in the eighties by bringing cricket into the desert, may be gifting the cricketing world the shortest, fastest and the most entertaining format.
Speaking to Gulf News, Shaji, who is busy ensuring that everything needed to entertain the fans and spread the format around the world is in place, said: “We will become the first in the history of cricket to present the T10 concept at an international level. A lot will depend on the acceptance level of the crowd and the feedback. The way things are going, it is positive and, if executed well, it could definitely become the format people would love to play.”
Shaji, who is also the General Secretary of the Ajman Cricket Council and a member of the Emirates Cricket Board, wants to promote this format around the world. “Ajman Council will soon announce a T10 tournament at the domestic level. West Indies Cricket Board wants to start a T10 format event in Jamaica. I had a nice discussion with David Cameron [President of West Indies Cricket Board] and he has welcomed it. What we intend to do is we want to take T10 to the rest of the world. My team will want to see more than one tournament of this format being played in different countries.”
Shaji is delighted with the work done by the team owners to reach out to the communities represented by the teams. “The league itself is a South Asian community-based event and the team owners are doing a fantastic job. They are pushing all the communities here. In the end, it will be the affinity the community shows towards their teams that would pull them to the stadium. Each team is giving thousands of T shirts and the fans can wear and be in one segment with their flags.
Shaji also revealed that they have crossed the sponsorship targets they expected.
“Being our first year, we would have been happy if we would sell even fifty per cent but we sold almost 90 per cent of our sponsorships deals. We got title sponsors, associate sponsors, airline partners and more than what we could ask for in our first year. We received huge support from the business community,” he said
To ensure that the matches are professionally played, Shaji said: “We have ensured that the matches are officiated by all international ICC panel umpires and match referees. We ensured all facilities for ICC’s anti-doping and anti-corruption. We want everything to be of the highest order.”
A centurion in T10 tournament will get an apartment in Dubai as a prize
Spectators of the T10 Cricket League are sure to witness some slam-bang, high-octane matches over the coming four days at the Sharjah Cricket Stadium.
One can expect a flurry of sixes and fours from some big-hitting batsmen. But, apart from keeping an eye on the ball, the power-hitters will also be targeting an apartment in Dubai which is on offer for the batsman that scores a century.
Speaking to Khaleej Times, Ali Tumbi of Aqua Properties, who are one of the owners of the Maratha Arabians team, said: "Any batsman who can hit a century will get a studio apartment worth Dhs 500,000 in Dubai."
When Tumbi was asked if it was possible for a player to reach a century given that the batsman could face barely 30 to 40 balls (max) in a 60-ball innings. Pat came his reply "why not".
"I can't speak for other teams, but from our team Alex Hales, Virender Sehwag and even Kamran Akmal can achieve it.
"Akmal has a 150 from 70 balls so if it comes down to 100 from 40 balls it is possible. We hope someone can hit a century and get an apartment."
Not only that, any batsman scoring a half century can walk away with a Hublo Rolex standard watch.
With interest diminishing towards Test matches and ODIs the focus has shifted towards T20s. Now with T10 coming into the picture one begs to differ whether cricket will be reduced to T5.
But Ali was quick to dispel it. "This (T10) is the limit. If you see all global games like soccer (it is 90 minutes), basketball (is four quarters of 15 minutes), so majority of these games which are very popular around the world are shorter game formats. This was a challenge for cricket. Now the world has changed, everything is moving fast so with that the game of cricket too needs to keep up with the pace with the audiences.
"People don't have patience. In T20 also it's the first 5 overs and last 5 overs which are entertaining so in between people look to switch channels. In T10 there is no channel switching. Here every ball counts and more exciting is the 'dot' ball.
"One thing different about this format is in a day you will have more than one T10 match and at the same venue which means full day entertainment."
1st match, Group A - Bengal Tigers v Kerala Kings
Anwar Ali Bowler
DM Bravo Batsman
J Charles Batsman
CS Delport Allrounder
ADS Fletcher † Wicketkeeper
Mohammad Naveed Bowler
Mohammad Nawaz(3) Allrounder
Mustafizur Rahman Bowler
SP Narine Bowler
Rameez Shahzad Batsman
Rumman Raees Bowler
DJG Sammy Allrounder
Sarfraz Ahmed (c) Batsman
Babar Hayat Batsman
S Badree Bowler
RR Emrit Allrounder
Imran Haider Bowler
EJG Morgan (c) Batsman
LE Plunkett Bowler
KA Pollard Allrounder
N Pooran Batsman
Rohan Mustafa Batsman
Shakib Al Hasan Allrounder
Sohail Tanvir Bowler
PR Stirling Allrounder
RN ten Doeschate Allrounder
Wahab Riaz Bowler
CAK Walton † Wicketkeeper