Indian batsman Suresh Raina was appointed as the captain of the Rajkot franchise for the upcoming edition of the Indian Premier League (IPL).
The Keshav Bansal owned-side, which has also appointed Australia batsman Brad Hodge as its head coach, will be known as Gujarat Lions.
Pune and Rajkot were unveiled as the new teams in the lucrative Twenty20 competition in December, replacing Chennai and Rajasthan, who were handed two-year suspensions for their involvement in an illegal betting scandal.
“Suresh Raina is a remarkable player with an impeccable record in all formats of the game,” franchise owner Keshav Bansal said in a statement, announcing the team would be called the Gujarat Lions.
“His extensive experience combined with his great leadership skills will help us in putting together a winning strategy for the team.”
Having played for three IPL teams, Hodge is familiar with the popular tournament. Back home, the 41-year-old captained Adelaide Strikers in this year’s Big Bash League (BBL), while also taking on an assistant coaching role.
“We finalised Brad Hodge as the team coach on the basis of his successful contribution to the Australian national team and his excellent stint in the IPL,” Bansal said.
“I am confident that our team will benefit immensely from his guidance and mentorship.”