Veteran opener Chris Gayle headlines several West Indies stars who have confirmed their participation in the Abu Dhabi T20 which bowls off in the United Arab Emirates next month.
The 41-year-old Gayle joins Windies teammates Andre Russell, Dwayne Bravo and Sunil Narine, who media reports here have said will turn out in the January 28 to February 6 tournament at the Sheikh Zayed Stadium.
“The shorter the format, the more exciting the game becomes. I can’t wait to play at the Zayed Cricket Stadium again, watch out Abu Dhabi – a Gayle-storm is coming,” Gayle was quoted as saying in a statement.
The Jamaican, the most successful batsman ever in the Twenty20 format, will be the icon player for Team Abu Dhabi.
Russell, meanwhile, fresh from his outing in the Lanka Premier League, has signed on as the icon player for Northern Warriors while Bravo will take up the same role for Delhi Bulls after featuring for titleholders Maratha Arabians last year.
Off-spinner Narine will, meanwhile, suit up as the icon player for Deccan Gladiators who were last year’s losing finalists.
The tournament had been slated for last month but was rescheduled due to the ongoing global COVID-19 pandemic, and Aref Al Awani, General Secretary of Abu Dhabi Sports Council, said the event remained high on the region’s sports agenda.
“Although we have hosted numerous local and international cricket events in the past, our commitment to host the second season of Abu Dhabi T10 enhances our gold star portfolio of world-class destination sporting events,” he said.
“It builds upon and expands our profile for bringing together the top athletes in world sport and offering elite competition and unparalleled entertainment value.”
Eight teams will do battle in the tournament, which is in its fourth year.