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IPL stars Lasith Malinga, Chris Gayle among icon players for South African T20

Top stars of the Indian Premier League will also light up South Africa’s T20 Global Destination League scheduled for later this year. Mumbai Indians stars Lasith Malinga and Kieron Pollard and Royal Challengers Bangalore’s Chris Gayle are among the marquee players

ipl 2017 Updated: Apr 13, 2017 23:31 IST
HT Correspondent
HT Correspondent
Hindustan Times, New Delhi
IPl 2017,Cricket South AFrica,T20 Global Destination League
Lasith Malinga of Mumbai Indians is the leading wicket-taker in Indian Premier League. The Sri Lankan will be one of the most sought after players in South Africa’s T20 Global Destination League (BCCI)

Lasith Malinga, Kieron Pollards and the ‘Universal Boss’ of Twenty20 cricket Chris Gayle are among the eight marquee players for the inaugural edition of Cricket South Africa’s T20 Global Destination League scheduled for later this year. (IPL full coverage)

There will be no Indians players in this South African T20 championship, devised along the lines of the super successful Indian Premier League. (SCHEDULE | RESULTS)

The Board of Control for Cricket in India doesn’t allow Indians players to play in T20 leagues around the world and it is a resolution of the Board that can’t be changed now, said BCCI CEO Rahul Johri recently.

Yuvraj Singh of the Sunrisers Hyderabad and Kieron Pollard of the Mumbai Indians chat after their match at the Wankhede Stadium in Mumbai on Wednesday (BCCI)

Apart from Malinga, Pollard and Gayle, the other marquee players for the South African T20 are: Kevin Pietersen, Brendon McCullum, Dwayne Bravo, Eoin Morgan and Jason Roy.

Except Pietersen, who last played for Rising Pune Supergiant, the rest are active Indian Premier League players.

The eight international marquee players will be entered into a mini-draft with the highest bidding franchise owner having first pick and the rest following the same process.

Franchise owners will be asked to consider the fact that some of these players, by virtue of having played for some years in South Africa, already hold strong ties to certain cities in South Africa.

“Coming from four different continents, these players confirm the global interest we have already seen. No doubt this will grow as other international stars register their interest to participate in our new T20 League,” said Cricket South Africa CEO Haroon Lorgat.

Mahendra Singh Dhoni of Rising Pune Supergiant and Kevin Pietersen during the Indian Premier League 2017 (BCCI)

“South Africa, as everyone knows, is very close to my heart. So being a part of something innovative in their cricketing structure really excites me,” said Pietersen, who is commentating on the Indian Premier League.

Chris Gayle is excited too. He plays in more T20 leagues across the world than he plays for the West Indies.

“I look forward to returning to South Africa as I have very happy memories of my time there. This included scoring the first ever century in T20 International cricket when the inaugural ICC World Twenty20 was held in South Africa in 2007,” said Gayle, who is on the verge of becoming the first batsman to score 10,000 T20 runs.

First Published: Apr 13, 2017 16:13 IST