South Africa's upcoming T20 league has already signed over 30 marquee international players for its inaugural edition starting in January next year, said Cricket South Africa (CSA) on Wednesday.Though the league did not name any of the marquee players in its official statement, it did say that the numbers (are) set to increase as players enter the auction taking place in the next few weeks, apart from all contracted Proteas and domestic players who have committed to the League.
The six franchises in the T20 league will have a squad of 17 players, and will be able to pre-sign up to five players made up of three international players, one Proteas player and one uncapped South African player prior to the auction.
South Africa's T20 League will be directly clashing with UAE's International League T20 (ILT20), to be also held in January next year, which is also in the period of operation for Australia's Big Bash League (BBL) and the Bangladesh Premier League (BPL).
"This is an important milestone for the League. Having world-class South African players playing with some of best cricketers around the world makes for some outstanding cricket. I'm mostly excited for the young and upcoming talent in our cricket pipeline.
They will get to rub shoulders with some experienced and talented players which will no doubt inspire and help them to raise their own game.""The League's priority is to help strengthen our domestic cricket structures while putting on an exciting and entertaining cricketing showpiece.
Our player regulations have been thoughtfully drafted in consultation with the franchises and everyone is ready to get going. We're looking forward to seeing how the teams match up and how the franchises will build their squads," said Graeme Smith, League Commissioner.
The league further said that players from across a host of countries have expressed their interest to be a part of the League and are currently being signed up for the 2023 season and beyond. All six teams in the league were bought by owners of IPL franchises Mumbai Indians, Chennai Super Kings, Lucknow Super Giants, Sunrisers Hyderabad, Rajasthan Royals and Delhi Capitals (co-owner JSW).
"We are delighted with the interest from the player community and are onboarding players with the support from the cricket boards. I'm looking forward to welcoming players from all regions across the cricketing world," ended Smith.