Delhi Bulls displayed their batting strength to overcome Deccan Gladiators’ challenging score of 120 for 2 in 10 overs to win the third match of the Abu Dhabi T10 at the Zayed Cricket Stadium by nine wickets with nine balls to spare.
Ahead of the 2023 edition of cricket’s fastest format, Abu Dhabi T10, the players’ draft was released on Monday, with the participating eight teams, Bangla Tigers, Chennai Braves, Deccan Gladiators, Delhi Bulls, Morrisville Samp Army, New York Strikers, Northern Warriors, and Team Abu Dhabi – also announcing their list of retained players and direct signings for the season.
The ‘23 edition of the season saw a registration of 782 players from across the globe, including some of the biggest names in international cricket. Former Pakistan great Shahid Afridi is among the list of Icon Stars who will be up for grabs on Monday, along with his compatriots Mohammad Hafeez, Wahab Riaz, Bangladesh batsman Tamim Iqbal, and Sri Lanka’s Dasun Shanaka.
The pre-signed players by the teams feature former Indian superstars Ambati Rayudu, and Yusuf Pathan. While Bangla Tigers roped in the explosive all-rounder Pathan, Delhi Bulls have signed on the ever-dynamic batter Rayudu.
Speaking on competing in the upcoming edition of Abu Dhabi T10, Pathan said, “The 10-over format is exciting and hence, I am always delighted to be a part of the league. My aim is to entertain the fans and help my team win the trophy this season.”
Among the retentions for the new season, the 2022 title winners Deccan Gladiators have kept hold of the powerhouse Nicholas Pooran. The left-handed batter was the leading run-scorer of the previous season as he smashed 345 runs in 10 games at an average of 49.29 and a whopping strike rate of 234.69. Pooran also smashed 25 sixes, the maximum by any player last season. Meanwhile, The Chennai Braves retained captain Sikandar Raza, who has been a symbol of consistency over the years.
Pakistan pacer Hassan Ali has also been pre-signed by the Chennai Braves. The defending champions have also brought on New Zealand speedster Trent Boult on board, while Morrisville Samp Army have roped in the services of former South Africa captain Faf du Plessis, among other new names.
The runners-up of last season, New York Strikers retained former West Indies captain Kieron Pollard, while Morrisville Samp Army kept hold of Moeen Ali. Team Abu Dhabi kept the game-changers Philip Salt and Alex Hales in their squad for season.
Northern Warriors made a strategic move with retention of allrounder and T20 specialist Wanindu Hasaranga, while Bangla Tigers retained veteran Shakib al Hasan to bolster experience among their ranks. Delhi Bulls kept hold of dynamic Windies allrounder Dwayne Bravo, who will once again be a key player for them this season.
Adil Rashid, Chris Lynn in players’ draft
England spinner Adil Rashid and Australia’s fiery batsman Chris Lynn are among the players listed in the Platinum category for the players’ draft, along with Kusal Mendis, Liton Das, Mohammad Nabi, and Rahmanullah Gurbaz. The remaining players in the draft are divided across five other categories – Cat A, Cat B, Cat C, Emerging, and the UAE local players, who will be up for selection on Monday.
Speaking on the upcoming draft, Shaji Ul Mulk, Chairman, T10 Global, said, “The franchises have made their first moves with smart player retentions and direct signings. Some selections may come as a surprise, indicating the teams already have a few tricks up their sleeves, promising another high-octane draft day and an even more exciting edition of the Abu Dhabi T10.”