Cricket South Africa’s (CSA) new franchise-based T20 league, which is set to kick off in January 2023, has been named SA20. The player auction for the inaugural season will be held on September 19.
Former Proteas skipper Graeme Smith, who is the commissioner of the T20 league, announced the developments during a press conference on Wednesday, August 31.
SA20 and International League T20 (ILT20) - UAE’s T20 tournament - are the two new leagues set to join the growing list of franchise competitions across the globe.
Six franchises will be taking part in the inaugural edition of SAT20 - Johannesburg Super Kings, RPSG Durban, MI Cape Town, Paarl Royals, Pretoria Capitals, and Sunrisers Eastern Cape. As the name suggests, all six teams have been purchased by Indian Premier League (IPL) franchise owners.
All six teams were allowed to sign up to five players apiece from a pool in the direct-acquisition process. The overall purse of the franchises is US $2 million.
The maximum squad strength has been capped at 17. This means that franchises that have acquired the services of five players can add a further 12 at the auction. Out of the 17 players in the squad, 10 will be local players and seven international cricketers.
As per a report in Sport24, SA20 is slated to start in January after South Africa return from their three-Test series against Australia.
The start of the SA20 is likely to clash with the business end of the Big Bash League. However, Smith asserted at the press conference that players who have signed for the BBL will be released and allowed to take part in South Africa’s T20 league. He explained:
"We have an agreement with the players that we've signed and the BBL has an agreement in place that allows players to take part in a portion of the Big Bash. They have a different structure this year, so the players in our league who have signed up will be there up until the early days of January so that they will be available.
“They'll be released to come and play here, from where they'll be fully available for the South African league."
List of players purchased by SA20 franchises ahead of auction
The following is the franchise-wise list of players purchased so far for the upcoming SA20 competition:
Johannesburg Super Kings: Faf du Plessis, Moeen Ali, Maheesh Theekshana, Romario Shepherd, and Gerald Coetzee.
RPSG Durban: Quinton de Kock, Jason Holder, Kyle Mayers, Reece Topley, and Prenelan Subrayen.
MI Cape Town: Rashid Khan, Liam Livingstone, Sam Curran, Kagiso Rabada, and Dewald Brevis.
Paarl Royals: Jos Buttler, David Miller, Obed McCoy, and Corbin Bosch.
Pretoria Capitals: Anrich Nortje and Migael Pretorius.
Sunrisers Eastern Cape: Aiden Markram and Ottniel Baartman.
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