The ILT20 Development Tournament, set in Dubai from September 30 to October 10, offers UAE cricketers a chance to shine. With 13 spots open, it’s a pivotal gateway to DP World ILT20 Season 2.
The International League T20 (ILT20) is all set to launch the inaugural edition of the ILT20 Development Tournament, scheduled to take place from September 30 to October 10 in Dubai. This tournament is exclusively designed to showcase the talent of UAE-based cricketers and provide them with a golden opportunity to earn a spot in Season 2 of ILT20.
The ILT20 Development Tournament mandates that each franchise participating in the league must include four UAE players in their squads. As of now, the six franchises have retained a total of 11 talented UAE players, leaving 13 openings available for aspiring cricketers.
The 11 retained UAE players, who have already made their mark, include Ali Naseer (Desert Vipers), Aayan Afzal Khan (Gulf Giants), Junaid Siddique (Sharjah Warriors), Matiullah (Abu Dhabi Knight Riders), Mohammad Waseem (MI Emirates), Muhammad Jawadullah (Sharjah Warriors), Raja Akif (Dubai Capitals), Rohan Mustafa (Desert Vipers), Sabir Ali (Abu Dhabi Knight Riders), Sanchit Sharma (Gulf Giants), and Zahoor Khan (MI Emirates). These players are eager to showcase their skills in the upcoming ILT20 Development Tournament.
The ILT20 Development Tournament will feature six teams, each competing in a round-robin format with five matches to be played in the group stage. The top four teams at the conclusion of the group stage will advance to the semi-finals. All group stage matches will be hosted at the prestigious ICC Academy Grounds, with the grand final set to take place on October 10.
The selection process for these UAE players will be overseen by the six head coaches, who will collaborate with their respective support staff. Andy Russell, the Emirates Cricket Board’s Development Manager and Tournament Director of the ILT20 Development Tournament, will supervise the selection process, ensuring transparency and fairness.
Mubashshir Usmani, General Secretary of the Emirates Cricket Board, expressed his enthusiasm for this significant initiative, stating, “We are very happy to see UAE players being provided an opportunity to showcase their skills through the ILT20 Development Tournament. This initiative is truly a life-changing opportunity for these players. I am confident that the tournament will be hugely beneficial for the growth of the game and will become a launch pad for participation in the DP World ILT20, as well as aiding in the identification and selection of players for UAE’s men’s teams in the years ahead.”
Following the ILT20 Development Tournament, all participating players (excluding the 11 retained players) will be eligible for selection in DP World ILT20 Season 2. The 13 remaining spots for UAE players across the six franchises will be filled through a DP World ILT20 organized Player Draft, scheduled to take place after the Development Tournament, promising more thrilling opportunities for the talented cricketers from the UAE.