Town - The ball is finally rolling on South Africa's very own international T20
competition, which has now been called the Mzansi Super League.
Following the embarrassment of
2017's failed T20 Global League, it seemed that Cricket South Africa (CSA) was
on course for another failed attempt at launching the product in 2018.
But, with time almost up, they
seem to have pulled a rabbit out of the hat and the tournament now looks good
to go on November 16.
A broadcaster is on board, the
franchises and host cities have been announced and we now know who the players
are that will be featuring.
Six marquee Proteas have been
assigned franchises already, while there are also six international marquee
players who will form the first round of Wednesday's player draft in
Then, on Tuesday, CSA released
the names of every other player to be included in the draft.
While there is certainly not the star
power of the IPL, there is more than enough to be excited about, especially
considering this is the first year of the tournament.
West Indies stars Chris Gayle and Dwayne Bravo, Afghanistan
spin sensation Rasheed
Khan and the England trio of Jason Roy, Dawid Malan and Eoin Morgan are
the international marquee players, but a look through the other players
available suggests there will be some quality T20 cricket on offer.
Mohammad Ashraful, Mohammad
Shahzad, Dwayne Smith, Upul Tharanga, Sam Billings, Colin Munroe, Brendan
Taylor, Dan Christian, Asela Gunaratne, Chris Jordan, Marlon Samuels, Shoaib
Malik, Jade Dernbach, Fidel Edwards, Mohammad Irfan, Jerome Taylor, Samuel
Badree and Jeetan Patel are some of the bigger international players
There is also good news on the
local front, where all the current crop of Proteas as well as some of the
country's Kolpak stars are available.
It means that Dale Steyn and
Vernon Philander will be signed on Wednesday, while the likes of Kyle Abbott,
Rilee Rossouw, Cameron Delport, Heino Kuhn, Dane Vilas, Wayne Parnell, David
Wiese, Marchant de Lange, Hardus Viljoen and Simon Harmer are all on the
That is the good news.
The bad news, however, is that
there will be a lot of disruption with many of the bigger names unable to
commit for the entire tournament.
The Kolpak players, with the
exception of Parnell and Rossouw, are all good to go and have no other
The Proteas, though, are in
Australia for three ODIs and a T20I from November 4-17.
With the Mzansi Super League
taking place from November
16 to December 16, that tour is not the end of the world.
A look at the availability of
some of the overseas-based players, however, is more concerning.
In fact, none of the
six international marquee players will be available for the entirety of the
Gayle, Roy, Morgan and Khan will
be available for less
than two weeks at the business end of the competition from December 4-16 due
to a combination of international commitments and their involvement in
the Abu Dhabi T10.
Malan and Bravo, meanwhile, will
only be available either
side of the Abu Dhabi T10 competition which takes place
from November 23 to
It is obviously not ideal having
players coming and going, but the overwhelming positive is that this will not
be a glorified domestic competition.
Wednesday’s draft will start at 10:00.