Bajans for Bangladesh
Make room,?Kieron Pollard and Dwayne Bravo, the Bangladesh Premier League is about to get some more Caribbean flavour!
And the added spice will be very Bajan.
Swashbuckling batsman Dwayne Smith, fiery fast bowlers Fidel Edwards and Tino Best, as well as clever spinner Sulieman Benn have requested and been granted No Objection Certificates (NOC)? so they can place their hats in the ring to compete in the planet’s newest big-money Twenty20 tournament.
But there is a catch-22 to the good news.
The February 9 to 29 tournament in Bangladesh clashes with the West Indies Cricket Board’s annual four-day tournament.
That means any members of the team who are in Bangladesh would miss Barbados’ first three matches.
These are against Jamaica at Sabina Park from February 10 to 13; the February 17-20 match versus Trinidad and Tobago slated for Kensington Oval, and Barbados’ third match from February 24 to 27, also at Kensington, against the Combined Campuses and Colleges.
Even though Smith wasn’t selected for last year’s first-class championship, he is in ripping form at the moment and is expected to feature again in the four-day format.
Edwards, Best and Benn are Barbados’ most experienced specialist bowlers.
But the Barbados Cricket Association (BCA) isn’t overly worried it could lose plenty firepower.
“We have a simple contingency plan in place,” vice-president Conde Riley told the WEEKEND NATION.
“We have a large batch of players to choose from for the tournament, and if any of those four players are chosen in the auction, one of our very talented core of fringe players will get the opportunity to excel. We have no reason to be worried.”
The inaugural Bangladesh Premier League has already attracted such stars as Pollard and Bravo from the West Indies, Adam Gilchrist and Matthew Hayden from Australia, and Kamran Akmal from Pakistan.
The actual auction for the players, where franchise owners can bid on players, will be held in Dhaka on January 15. Each team has to spend a minimum of $2 million, and can spend up to $5 million on players.
Any of the Barbadian players could also earn a huge payday, since each team has the choice of taking an “icon player” who will be paid five per cent more than any other player on the team for the 20-day tournament.