Teams announce star studded T20 squads
The inaugural edition of the Champions League Twenty20 promises to be brimming with international stars after the announcement of the final 15-player squads for this year's tournament from October 8-23.
There are a total of twelve teams participating in the event that will feature the likes of Graeme Smith, Virender Sehwag, Brett Lee, Brendon McCullum, Paul Collingwood and Dwayne Bravo.
Lalit Modi, the brain behind the event, feels it will be a star-studded affair.
"Never before has a domestic cricket tournament featured as many cricket superstars as the inaugural Airtel Champions League Twenty20," Modi said.
"As expected, almost all eligible international stars have confirmed their attendance at domestic cricket's showpiece event," he added.
The Chairman of the T20 event refused to pick any team as the tournament favourite.
"Picking a winner of the tournament is impossible. While some of the squads consist almost entirely of international players, there is enough high-class talent in all teams to ensure that no team enters the Champions League Twenty20 as overwhelming favourites," Modi said.
Dean Kino, Champions League Twenty20 Governing Council Member and Director of Legal and Business Affairs, too, reiterated the opinion.
"When the Champions League Twenty20 concept was first devised by the BCCI, Cricket Australia and Cricket South Africa, we set out to create a tournament that reflected cricket's global appeal and would be a true test between the best of best," Kino said.
"The quality of players who will line up for their respective teams, coupled with the billions of people who will follow the tournament, will do this vision justice."
"A number of players, including AB de Villiers, Paul Collingwood, Dirk Nannes and Daniel Vettori will represent their 'away' teams in the tournament, highlighting the global nature of domestic Twenty20 cricket," Kino added.
The T20 event that was scheduled to start in 2008, had to be cancelled after the Mumbai terror attack. The tournament will finally see the light of the day on October 8.
"With just 30 days to go until the first ball is bowled, today's announcement of the teams is another important milestone as we build towards the first match on October 8," Modi said.
Here are the 12 teams:
Trinidad and Tobago: Daren Ganga (c), Sherwin Ganga, Dwayne Bravo, Darren Bravo, Denesh Ramdin, Ravi Rampaul, Lendl Simmons, Dave Mohammed, Keiron Pollard, William Perkins, Samuel Badree, Rayad Emrit, Navin Stewart, Sunil Narine, Adrian Barath.
Victorian Bushrangers: Cameron White (c), Bradley Hodge, Peter Siddle, David Hussey, Andrew McDonald, Jon Holland, Clinton McKay, Robert Quiney, Matthew Wade, Aiden Blizzard, Aaron Finch, Shane Harwood, John Hastings, Damien Wright, Bryce McGain.
Delhi Daredevils: Virender Sehwag (c), Tillakaratne Dilshan, Gautam Gambhir, Dirk Nannes, Dinesh Karthik, Daniel Vettori, Ashish Nehra, Amit Mishra, AB DeVilliers, Paul Collingwood, Owais Shah, Pradeep Sangwan, Aavishkar Salvi, Rajat Bhatia, Mithun Manhas.
NSW Blues: Simon Katich (c), Phillip Hughes, Brett Lee, Nathan Bracken, Stuart Clark, Moises Henriques, Nathan Hauritz, Daniel Smith, Doug Bollinger, Stephen O'Keefe, Ben Rohrer, Steven Smith, Aaron Bird, Dominic Thornely, David Warner.
Otago Volts: Craig Cumming (c), Brendon McCullum, Nathan McCullum, Aaron Redmond, Neil Broom, Ian Butler, Dimitri Mascarenhas, Greg Todd, Hamish Rutherford, Derek de Boorder, Nick Baird, Warren McSkimming, Neil Wagner, Mattew Harvie, James McMillan.
Cape Cobras: Graeme Smith (c), Hershelle Gibbs, J P Duminy, Justin Ontong, Charl Langeveldt, Claude Henderson, Monde Zondeki, Vernon Philander, Henry Davids, Derek Brand, Francois Plaatjies, Ryan Canning, Rory Kleinveldt, Richard Levi, Sybrand Engelbrecht.
Wayamba: Jehan Mubarak (c), Mahela Jayawardene, Ajantha Mendis, Rangana Herath, Farveez Maharoof, Kaushlya Lokuarachchi, Jeevantha Kulathunga, Mahela Udawatta, Thisara Perera, Sameera Soysa, Shalika Karunanayake, Isura Udana, Ishara Amerasinghe, Chanka Welagedera, Michael Vandort.
Sussex Sharks: Michael Yardy (c), Luke Wright, Piyush Chawla, Dwayne Smith, Edmund Joyce, Joe Gatting, Robin Martin-Jenkins, William Beer, Andrew Hodd, Christopher Nash, Ben Brown, Rory Hamilton-Brown, Mohmmed Yasir Arafat, Chad Keegan, James Kirtley.
Diamond Eagles: Boeta Dippenaar (c), Dillion du Preez, Morne van Wyk, Mthandeki Tshabalala, Adrian McLaren, Ryan McLaren, Victor Mpitsang, Ryan Bailey, Jandre Coetzee, Cornelis De Villiers, Dean Elgar, Reeza Hendricks, Alan Kruger, Rilee Rossouw, Shadley van Schalkwyk.
Somerset Sabres: Justin Langer (c), Marcus Trescothick, Zander de Bruyn, Omari Banks, James Hildreth, Craig Kieswetter, Pete Trego, Arul Suppiah, Alfonso Thomas, Max Waller, Charl Willoughby, Wes Durston, Mark Turner, Jos Buttler, Ben Philips.
Royal Challengers Bangalore: Anil Kumble (c), Rahul Dravid, Robin Uthappa, Jacques Kallis, Ross Taylor, Dale Steyn, Manish Pandey, Praveen Kumar, Jesse Ryder, Roelof Van Der Merwe, Mark Boucher, Vinay Kumar, Virat Kohli, Akhil Balachandra, Rajesh Bishoni.
Deccan Chargers: Adam Gilchrist (c), VVS Laxman, Rohit Sharma, Andrew Symonds, Fidel Edwards, Scott Styris, Chaminda Vaas, RP Singh, Ryan Harris, Pragyan Ojha, Y Venugopal Rao, T Suman, Azhar Bilakhia, Harmeet Singh, SM Shoaib.