LAHORE: The inaugural edition of the Pakistan Junior League (PJL) begins in less than a week (Thursday, October 6) at Gaddafi Stadium, Lahore.
Before the conclusion of the PCB Pathway Programme earlier this week, the captains spoke about the excitement created by the PJL.
Bahawalpur Royals captain Obaid Shahid said: “Being picked and then named captain of Bahawalpur Royals is nothing less than a dream coming true. I am determined to make an impression in the tournament and lead my side with grit, determination and passion. This league is an incredible opportunity for all of us and we are all excited.
“Our team mentor is Imran Tahir who despite his age remains one of the fittest players around. Having Imran in the dressing room means a lot to us, we would surely benefit from his presence and his immense experience as a T20 player.”
Gujranwala Giants captain Uzair Mumtaz said: “I was overjoyed at my selection for the PJL and the honour of captaining Gujranwala Giants.
“Our mentor Shoaib Malik is a legend of the game and his presence will mean a lot to us. We all hope to learn a great deal from him.”
Gwadar Sharks captain Shamyl Hussain said: “It was a big honour to get chosen for the Sharks and then being named the captain was the icing on the cake. I am really excited to deliver for my team as a player and captain.
“Having a mentor like Sir Vivian Richards is absolutely incredible. His presence alone will make a big impact in our dugout and we will learn a great deal from his experience.”
Hyderabad Hunters captain Saad Baig said: “I am thrilled to captain the Hyderabad Hunters. This opportunity will help me improve my game further while competing with some of the best U19 talent from around the world.
“Our team mentor Daren Sammy is a T20 World Cup winner and has legendary status in the T20 format. We are all looking forward to learning from his vast experience.”
Mardan Warriors captain Abbas Ali said: “Captaining the side is a fantastic opportunity for me and I want to give my absolute best in the tournament.
“Shahid Afridi’s presence as Mardan’s team mentor will be hugely beneficial for us considering his rich experience in the T20 format.”
Rawalpindi Raiders captain Habibullah said: “I am delighted to captain the Rawalpindi Raiders. My squad has some exciting talent and I am looking forward to leading them to success.
“Our team mentor Colin Munro has played T20 cricket around the world. I am really keen on learning the art of T20 batting from him.”
The teams will practice for four days leading up to the tournament opener between Gujranwala Giants and Mardan Warriors which will be played from 8pm next Thursday.
The 19-match tournament will be played on a single league basis with the six teams competing against each other once. The top four sides will compete in the playoffs. The final will be played on October 21.
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