Former cricketing stalwarts like Virender Sehwag, Kumar Sangakkara, Shahid Afridi among others will be seen participating in UAE’s new 'T10' league in December. The ten-over-a-side matches, which will run for 90 minutes, is scheduled for December 21-24 and four teams will be selected through drafts.
International cricket stars like Virender Sehwag, Kumar Sangakkara, Shahid Afridi, Shakib-Al-Hasan, Misbah-ul-Haq, Eoin Morgan and more are all set to face each other in the newly introduced ‘T10’ league by the United Arab Emirates.
The latest format will see ten-over matches that will run for about 90 minutes (45 minutes each side) in Sharjah, as per the details announced on Tuesday. Since its inception back in 2003 in England, T20 has gained huge prominence in international cricket now. Not only has it led to the introduction of a World T20 tournament, domestic leagues like the KFC Big Bash League and the Indian Premier League have also sprung up as marquee events every year.
The new league's president Salman Iqbal is confident that the T10 league has the potential to reach a similar magnitude.
"Everyone has played T10 cricket on the streets and this will give more fire to cricket and will be a big step forward and people will definitely enjoy it," Iqbal said.
The players seemed excited and thrilled with the new format’s introduction. Former Pakistan skipper Afridi said, “When I was told of the idea I was thrilled and requested that I want to play.”
43-year-old Misbah, who retired from Test this year said, “It’s an exciting idea and a good thing for players like me. It will need just ten overs of batting and then fielding and at this age, I can afford that."
The retired cricketers aren't the only ones to sign up for the event as there are a few names from the current generation who are in the draft as well. England’s T20 captain Morgan said, “The whole concept is exciting. We all remember when the first time Twenty20 cricket was played and since then it (Twenty20) has impacted the other formats. If this new idea takes off then I am sure it will also impact the other forms of the game.”
The tournament will be swift and short-term and will run for only four days from 21-24 December. Four teams, who will participate in it, will be selected through a draft later this month.