Abu Dhabi T10 will be nothing less than a spectacle when the likes of International cricket stars such as Chris Gayle, Shahid Afridi, Kieron Pollard, Shoaib Malik and Sunil Narine will be in full-throttle.
Abu Dhabi T10 is the world’s first and only ten-over cricket tournament officially sanctioned by the International Cricket Council (ICC). This year is going to mark the 2nd season of the Abu Dhabi T10 which will be held from 28th January to 6th February, 2021. In this tournament, every match has a 10-over-a-side format and a duration of 45 minutes a side, totalling 90 minutes of play. The tournament is played over ten days, in the round-robin format followed by semi-finals and the final.
Beginning from January 28 and running through February 6, the Abu Dhabi T10 will feature eight world-class teams, featuring some of the biggest superstars of the sport, fighting it out in 29 high-intensity cricket matches at Abu Dhabi’s iconic Zayed Cricket Stadium in UAE.
To keep the ball rolling, eight teams have been divided into two groups of four, with every team facing the other once in the group stage. The standings after the completion of the group stage will determine the fixtures of the Super League stage, which begins on February 1st. After 12 matches in the Super League stage, the competition gets more intense as we move closer to a thrilling end of the tournament. The Playoffs will take place on February 5, followed by the grand finale on February 6.
With three 10-over matches happening everyday until the final night, fans can gear up for a high dose of non-stop, fast-paced cricketing action every day. A total of eight teams from two groups will battle it out to be crowned the champions in the Manhattan of the middle-east.
Group A features the defending champions Maratha Arabians and former champions Northern Warriors, along with the young and energetic Bangla Tigers alongside the Delhi Bulls led by Dwayne “champion” Bravo. Group B is also equally competitive as last season’s finalists Deccan Gladiators are drawn with Qalandars, led by Shahid “Boom-Boom” Afridi, and the newly formed franchise, Pune Devils along with Team Abu Dhabi, which is bolstered by the Universal Boss Chris Gayle.
Defending champions Maratha Arabians, who have made an entirely new squad this season, will begin their title defence against former champions Northern Warriors from Group A in the tournament opener, which will be followed by Group B’s first match between the Pune Devils and Deccan Gladiators.
Each team features a blend of seasoned cricketers and young talents that can take their teams all the way to the summit.
Chris Gayle, Shahid Afridi, Shoaib Malik, Sunil Narine, Nicholas Pooran, Dwayne Bravo, Kieron Pollard and Mohammad Amir are some of the big names that will take the field for their teams. However, the tournament also features several exciting young talents that demand attention for their impeccable achievements at such a young age such as Afghan wicket keeper-batsman Rahmanullah Gurbaz, who played a vital role in Afghanistan’s recent win over Ireland, and Nepal’s 16-year-old Kushal Malla, who holds the world record for being the youngest batsman to score a One-Day International half-century.
The tournament also provides an opportunity for local United Arab Emirates cricketers to rub shoulders with some of the global superstars and showcase their talent, which will in turn, accelerate the development of UAE’s fast-evolving cricket culture.
For instance, one of the most experienced cricketers from the UAE, Rohan Mustafa, has been handed the vice-captaincy of Team Abu Dhabi, while a 16-year-old Maroof Merchant has been drafted into the Maratha Arabians squad.
The Abu Dhabi T10 is not just an event for the big guns to advertise their talents but also, it is a platform that focuses on the collective progress of youngsters and local heroes.
Amidst all the uncertainties of the T10 format and questions of which two teams will be able to make it to the final, we can assure one thing that, the entertainment quotient is going to be off the roof!