England all-rounder Liam Livingstone was roped in by MI Cape Town franchise yesterday (August 11) along with a host of other international and local talents. The 29-year-old is among the three overseas players signed by the Mumbai Indians' management ahead of the inaugural edition of the Cricket South Africa T20 League (CSA T20).
The newly-founded franchises were allowed to sign up to five players independently before the auction. The rules stated that a capped South African player as well as an uncapped South African player should be included.
MI Cape Town proceeded to sign Liam Livingstone, Rashid Khan, and Sam Curran while meeting the additional requirements with the acquisition of Kagiso Rabada and Dewald Brevis.
Expressing his delight at the prospect of representing MI Cape Town in the CSA T20 League next year, Livingstone said in a video released by the franchise's social media handles:
"Hello MI family, it's Liam Livingstone here, I can't wait to get on the plane to Cape Town and join up with my new teammates. Our whole squad, you fans, and the amazing atmosphere in Cape Town, it promises to be a very enjoyable experience. I can't wait to play in front of you all and hopefully I will see you all soon."
Liam Livingstone has made a name for himself in the shortest format of the game with his pyrotechnics. The English all-rounder cemented his status as one of the best power hitters on the circuit over the last 18 months.
Livingstone scored his maiden T20I hundred last year and had a landmark 2022 Indian Premier League (IPL) campaign with the Punjab Kings (PBKS).
"We have taken the first step towards building the MI philosophy – having a strong core" - MI Cape Town owner Akash Ambani
All six of the CSA T20 League franchises were acquired by IPL team owners, giving a major boost to the brand value of the competition.
MI Cape Town were the sole franchise in the league to have roped in five players prior to the auction. The remaining franchises opted to sign only up to a couple of players to assemble the rest of the squad through the auction.
Delighted at the prospect of having established a strong core, team owner Akash Ambani said:
“With our direct player signings, we have taken the first step towards building the MI philosophy – having a strong core around which the team will be planned. I am glad to welcome Rashid, Kagiso, Liam, Sam and happy to have Dewald continue with us on this new journey.”
Franchises will be allowed to form a squad upto 17 players for the tournament. Several major international players, including Jos Buttler, have registered their names for the auction.
Will Liam Livingstone be able to shine for MI Cape Town? Let us know what you think.