UAE will be host to the first ever edition of the ‘Ninety-Bash’ next year as on Sunday, the Emirates Cricket Board gave green signal to the experimental competition. Salman Iqbal, owner of the Karachi Kings PSL franchise, described it as the ‘most attractive deviation of the modern game’.
Following the inaugural edition of ‘The Hundred’ later this year, there will be a 90-ball competition in UAE in 2022 as the Emirates Cricket Board, on Sunday, approved organising the ‘Ninety-Bash’, a franchise-based 90-ball tournament. T10 cricket has already captured the market in the UAE, but in an aim to strike a balance between conventional short-form cricket and the attraction that innovation and experimentation brings, Abdul Rehman Bukhatir, chairman of the Bukhatir Group, his son Khalaf Bukhatir, Salman Iqbal, the owner of the Karachi Kings franchise in the Pakistan Super League (PSL), and Imran Chaudhry, the MD of the Dubai-based Cinergie group of companies, have joined hands to launch the Ninety-Bash.
"The 90/90 is such a fresh take that is sure to make an indelible mark on the minds of fans and followers everywhere. After several other adjustments already in the market, this is probably the most attractive deviation of the modern game, especially with the notion that T10 is too short for real cricketing strategy to be showcased," Iqbal told Cricbuzz on Saturday (June 26).
"Cricket is an incredibly popular sports globally and especially in this region. It is continuously evolving and this seemed like such a natural progression of evolving the game into a more compact sport without sacrificing on cricket's own aesthetic and planning. That is the main reason I created the concept -- it was a no-brainer for me to back fully with our sports management acumen and media muscle fully, in partnership with Imran Chaudhry and Mr Bukhatir."
The inaugural edition of the experimental league, that will kick off in 2022, is expected to be held in its entirety in Sharjah.