BBL: Just 20 days before young talent takes centre stage

There are only 20 days until the start of the KFC T20 Big Bash League, with Australia’s best young talent again expected to use the competition as a platform to push for international selection.

While the 18 international players signed so far will add an exciting element to the league for fans, the BBL’s Mike McKenna says that one of the most pleasing achievements of the opening two seasons has been the performances of young Australian talent and the league’s role in giving them the opportunity to stake their claims to represent Australia.

“Last season, James Faulkner, Nathan Coulter-Nile, Ben Cutting, and Kane Richardson converted their great BBL form into international selection for the first time. Aaron Finch and Ben Rohrer were also among those rewarded with their respective ODI and T20 international debuts as a direct result of their performances in the Big Bash.

“We’re extremely proud that the league is playing a significant role in providing opportunities for so many young Australian cricketers to earn international selection. The players last year join a list of Australian players including David Warner, Nathan Lyon and Pat Cummins who first made their mark in domestic T20 before playing for Australia in all forms of the game.

“It’s these players that are the backbone of the competition and provide so much excitement for fans around the country.

“There is so much to look forward to this season. The BBL will be on free-to-air television for the first time on Network Ten, while we also have a new radio broadcast rights agreement with Fairfax Radio Network, both of whom we think will take the league to a whole new audience.

“Clubs meanwhile have been working hard for many months to ensure they offer fans the best possible experience at matches. With ticket prices starting at $20 for adults, $5 for kids and $42.50 for a family, we think the league offers great value and great entertainment for families.”

???????????????????????????To highlight the talent that will be on show in BBL|03, CA National Talent Manager and Hall of Famer Greg Chappell, Australian limited overs bowling coach Ali de Winter and CA spin bowling consultant John Davison sat down this week to name the top five young batsmen, fast bowlers and spinners fans should look out for this season.

Their lists include the hottest young talent that will be on show this season. With the 2014 ICC World Twenty20 to be held in Bangladesh in March next year, this season’s BBL will serve as the perfect audition for these players to push for international selection.

The trio’s analysis of the league’s best young talent is available on the BBL’s website:

Greg Chappell’s Top 5 Young Batsmen

Ali de Winter’s Top 5 Young Fast Bowlers

John Davison’s Top 5 Young Spin Bowlers

Clubs have just one week remaining to finalise their squads and competition for signatures has been strong, with each club complementing their local talent with some of world cricket’s most accomplished international T20 players.

Players from seven different countries – Australia, England, South Africa, West Indies, New Zealand, Pakistan and Sri Lanka – will line-up across the league with crowd favourites from previous seasons set to return alongside a host of new faces.

BBL|03 Fact File

  • 20 December 2013 – 7 February 2014
  • Each team plays eight matches, four home and four away
  • Each team must sign a maximum of 18 players by Friday 6 December
  • Teams can sign up to two international players in their initial squad
  • Season to start with the derbies in Melbourne and Sydney, and a BBL|02 BIG FINAL replay in Brisbane
  • Winner-take-all semi-finals with a spot in the BIG FINAL and Champions League Twenty20 qualification on the line
  • BBL|02 Champions: Brisbane Heat; BBL|01 Champions: Sydney Sixers

James Buttler

James has been working as a journalist and broadcaster in cricket since 2006 and was an avid fan for many years before that.
As the editor of World Cricket Badger he is intent on building the website to give quality coverage of the domestic game around the world.
He is also the presenter of the Cricket Badger Radio Show on Radio Yorkshire every Tuesday evening between 7-9pm UK time.
James was the full-time Media Manager at Yorkshire County Cricket Club between 2007 and 2010.
James is a published author, a writer/video contributor to many cricket publications and a complete cricket badger!

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