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Captains share excitement for inaugural Junior League edition
SPORTS BULLETIN REPORT Lahore (September 30, 2022):- The inaugural edition of the Pakistan Junior League begins in less than a week’s time (Thursday 6 October) at the headquarters of Pakistan cricket Gaddafi Stadium, Lahore. The teams will be beginning their preparations for the tournament this weekend. Before the conclusion of the PCB Pathway Programme earlier this week – almost all local PJL players were involved in the programme, the captains spoke about their excitement of playing the PJL, captaining their side and the life time opportunity of working with some of the greats of the game who are involved as mentors in the league. The mentor roster includes legends of the game Javed Miandad (league mentor), Imran Tahir (Bahawalpur Royals), Shoaib Malik (Gujranwala Giants), Sir Vivian Richards (Gwadar Sharks), Daren Sammy (Hyderabad Hunters), Shahid Afridi (Mardan Warriors) and Colin Munro (Rawalpindi Raiders). Captain Bahawalpur Royals Obaid Shahid: “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 to participate. “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 T2o player. He will also inspire us to raise our fitness standard.” Captain Gujranwala Giants Uzair Mumtaz: “I was overjoyed at my selection for the PJL and the honour of captaining Gujranwala Giants. My parents and family is really happy for me and are praying for my success. “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 and aspire to make the most of his experience and pedigree. Having Shoaib in the dugout would help us immensely considering his rich T20 experience.” Captain Gwadar Sharks Shamyl Hussain: “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 and stature in the game.” Captain Hyderabad Hunters Saad Baig: “I am thrilled to captain the Hyderabad Hunters in the Pakistan Junior League. I have made steady progress at the age-group level and 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.” Captain Mardan Warriors Abbas Ali: “My family was overjoyed with my selection in the Mardan Warriors team. Captaining the side in the Pakistan Junior League 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. Shahid will hopefully inspire us to great success in the tournament.” Captain Rawalpindi Raiders Habibullah: “I am delighted to captain the Rawalpindi Raiders in the Pakistan Junior League. My squad has some exciting talent and I am looking forward to leading them to success in the tournament. “Our team mentor Colin Munro has played T20 cricket around the world and made a big name, as a batter, 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 Friday, 21 October.
Gujranwala and Mardan to play Pakistan Junior League opener
SPORTS BULLETIN LAHORE:-The Pakistan Cricket Board today unveiled the schedule of the inaugural Pakistan Junior League edition that will be staged at the iconic Gaddafi Stadium, Lahore. Gujranwala Giants and Mardan Warriors will create history when they compete in the opening match of the tournament – the first of its kind – on Thursday, 6 October under the GSL lights. Bahawalpur Royals will play Hyderabad Hunters in their tournament opener on October 7, 2022, this match will also be staged under the lights. A total of 19 matches will be played in the 15-day tournament which includes 15 round matches followed by four playoffs including the 21 October final (Friday). Each of the six sides will play five matches in the single-league format (one against each of the five teams). In order to provide the local cricket fans an extended opportunity of seeing the next generation of cricket stars play under the guidance of team mentors Javed Miandad (league mentor), Sir Vivian Richards (Gwadar Sharks), Shahid Afridi (Mardan Warriors), Shoaib Malik (Gujranwala Giants), Imran Tahir (Bahawalpur Royals), Daren Sammy (Hyderabad Hunters) and Colin Munro (Rawalpindi Royals), a total of four double-headers will be staged in the inaugural edition – all on weekends. The first double-header day (Saturday, 8 October) will see Rawalpindi Raiders and Gwadar Sharks play their opening match of the tournament. Gujranwala Giants will play Bahawalpur Royals in the second match of the day. Other than the day-night fixtures,15 matches will be staged under lights. The day-night matches start at 3:30pm while the night matches (single-headers) start at 8pm. The tournament final will also start at 8pm. The local players in the meantime continue to prepare for the PJL at the ongoing Engro Cricket Coaching Project under the PCB Pathway Programme at the National High Performance Centre, Lahore. The foreign players will join their respective sides at the beginning of the tournament support period – 28 September. The foreign mentors will join their teams in the first week of October. All six sides will start practice with their squads and coaching staff during the event support period. Pakistan Junior League 2022 schedule: 6 October – Gujranwala Giants vs Mardan Warriors 7 October – Bahawalpur Royals vs Hyderabad Hunters 8 October – Rawalpindi Raiders vs Gwadar Sharks; Gujranwala Giants vs Bahawalpur Royals 9 October – Hyderabad Hunters vs Gwadar Sharks; Rawalpindi Raiders vs Mardan Warriors 10 October – Bahawalpur Royals vs Mardan Warriors 11 October – Hyderabad Hunters vs Rawalpindi Raiders 12 October – Gujranwala Giants vs Gwadar Sharks 13 October – Mardan Warriors vs Hyderabad Hunters 14 October  - Rawalpindi Raiders vs Gujranwala Giants; Bahawalpur Royals vs Gwadar Sharks 15 October – Hyderabad Hunters vs Gujranwala Giants; Bahawalpur Royals vs Rawalpindi Raiders 16 October – Mardan Warriors vs Gwadar Sharks 18 October – Qualifier 1 (1 vs 2) 19 October – Eliminator (3 vs 4) 20 October – Qualifier 2 (Loser Qualifier 1 vs Winner Eliminator) 21 October – Final (Qualifier 1 Winner vs Qualifier 2 Winner)
PJL coaching staff for the inaugural season announced
SPORTS BULLETIN REPORT Lahore:-Some of the leading coaches involved with domestic U19 and senior teams have been handed the reins of the six Pakistan Junior League teams for the 19-match inaugural season set to be held at Lahore’s Gadaffi Stadium from 6 to 21 October. The roster includes foreign coaches Gordon Parsons and Toby Radford. Parsons and Radford are two of the five coaches recruited for the PCB Pathway Programme. Radford will be joining the programme this week and will link-up with his PJL team once the event support period begins in the last week of September. Parsons has been named the head coach of Bahawalpur while Radford will be coaching Rawalpindi in the inaugural season. Pakistan U19 and Shaheens coach Ijaz Ahmed Snr, who is currently coaching Northern in the Kingdom Valley National T20 Cup 2022-23, will head Gujranwala’s coaching staff. PCB’s spin bowling consultant and Balochistan head coach, Mushtaq Ahmed, will be the head coach of the Gwadar side, while Abdul Razzaq, the Central Punjab head coach, will spearhead Hyderabad support staff. Khyber Pakhtunkhwa head coach Abdur Rehman will be Mardan’s head coach. Each of the six sides have also been assigned specialised coaches for support of their head coaches. Former Pakistan Test opener Imran Farhat (currently involved with Central Punjab) will be batting coach at Bahawalpur. Former Test bowler Aizaz Cheema, who is part of the Southern Punjab coaching team, will be the bowling coach for Gujranwala. PCB coach Kamran Khan currently involved with Northern will be Gwadar’s batting coach and Sindh head coach Ghulam Ali will join Razzaq in the Hyderabad dugout as the batting coach. Former Pakistan fast bowler Mohammad Sami would be making his coaching debut with a stint for Mardan as bowling coach. Seasoned U19 and age-group coach Muhammad Masroor would be Rawalpindi’s batting coach. The head coaches and assistant coaches will select their PJL squads in the player draft which will be held in Lahore today. Rest of the support staff for the six teams will be announced in due course. Bahawalpur: Mentor – Imran Tahir Head coach – Gordon Parsons Batting coach – Imran Farhat Gujranwala: Mentor – Shoaib Malik Head coach – Ijaz Ahmed Snr Bowling coach – Aizaz Cheema Gwadar: Mentor – Vivian Richards  Head coach – Mushtaq Ahmed Batting coach – Kamran Khan Hyderabad: Mentor – Daren Sammy   Head coach – Abdul Razzaq Batting coach – Ghulam Ali Mardan: Mentor – Shahid Afridi    Head coach – Abdur Rehman Bowling coach – Mohammad Sami  Rawalpindi Mentor – Colin Munro     Head coach – Toby Radford Batting coach – Mohammad Masroor
More than 250 local players in contention for 66 PJL spots
Sports Bulletin Report LAHORE:-More than 250 local and around 175 foreign players between 16 and 19 years of age will be available for selection for six teams in the player draft of the inaugural edition of the Pakistan Junior League. The draft will take place on Thursday, 8 September in Lahore. The local players list includes the players who took part in the two PCB organised national U19 one-day and three-day tournaments in the ongoing season. Players who were selected for their respective Cricket Association team for the two premier national U19 competitions are eligible for the draft even if they didn’t play any match. Additionally, a total of 17 players from the PJL social media video campaign have been invited to the NHPC in Lahore for age verification and trials. The players selected amongst the 17 will be added to the draft list. A total of 250-odd players will compete for 66 spots (11 in each of the six sides) for Bahawalpur, Gujranwala, Gwadar, Hyderabad, Mardan and Rawalpindi teams for PJL 2022. The foreign players will vie for 24 spots (four in each of the six sides). The age cut-off for tournament eligibility is 1 September 2003. The players have been divided into three categories - Elite, Premier and X-factor. The Elite category includes high-profile players who have either already appeared for their national U19 team or have made an impact at the domestic level (age-group cricket) organised by an ICC Full Member cricket board. Premier includes players who have significant age-group cricket experience or have been part of pathway cricket for their boards or regions. X-factor includes Associate Member board players as well as promising local talent. Amongst the foreign players, 105 are from ICC Full Member boards and more than 70 are from Associate Members. Prominent foreign players: Abdullah Al Mamun (Bangladesh), Ackeem Auguste (West Indies), Ahmad Zia Zaland (Afghanistan), Ali Naseer (UAE), Anjala Bandara (Sri Lanka), Archie Lenham (England), Ariful Islam (Bangladesh), Brendon Sunguro (Zimbabwe), Brian Bennett (Zimbabwe), Burhan Niaz (Belgium), Emmanuel Bawa (Zimbabwe), Ethan Gibson (Canada), George Thomas (England), Hassan Eisakhil (Afghanistan), Huggins Machaka (Zimbabwe), Isai Thorne (West Indies), Jash Ginani (UAE),  Jishan Alam (Bangladesh), Joseph Eckland (England), Joshua Tromp (USA), Lahiru Abeysinghe (Sri Lanka), Lahiru Dawatage (Sri Lanka), Luc Martin Benkenstein (England), Luke Holt (Australia), Malsha Tharupathi (Sri Lanka), Matthew Schocken (Zimbabwe), Matthew Tromp (USA), Masood Gurbaz (Afghanistan), Musa Shaheen Mahmood (Denmark), Nathan Edwards (West Indies), Naimur Rohman Noyon (Bangladesh), Nimar Bolden (West Indies), Oliver Davidson (Scotland), Olly Cox (England), Philippus le Roux (Ireland), Prantik Nawrose Nabil (Bangladesh), Shevon Daniel (Sri Lanka), Steven Wedderburn (West Indies), Tazeem Ali (Netherlands), Vasant Singh (West Indies) and Waleed Stanikzai (Afghanistan).
Pakistan Junior League: teams and their mentors confirmed
Sports Bulletin Report LAHORE:-With excitement and enthusiasm building, the Pakistan Cricket Board today confirmed the names of the six teams and their mentors for the Pakistan Junior League. The inaugural edition will be played in Lahore from 6-21 October this year and will be produced by the PCB and broadcast live by PTV Sports. The six sides to take part in this first of its kind U19 domestic cricket tournament, which is primarily aimed to provide opportunities to the talented teenagers to introduce themselves to the world, are: Bahawalpur (Southern Punjab), Gujranwala (Central Punjab), Gwadar (Balochistan), Hyderabad (Sindh), Mardan (Khyber Pakhtunkhwa) and Rawalpindi (Northern). South Africa’s Imran Tahir will be the team mentor for Bahawalpur, Pakistan’s two-time ICC tournament winner Shoaib Malik will be Gujranwala’s mentor, two-time 50-over World Cup winner Vivian Richards will be Gwadar’s mentor, two-time ICC T20 World Cup winner Daren Sammy will the mentor for Hyderabad, 2009 T20 World Cup winner and charismatic Shahid Afridi will be the mentor for Mardan and hard-hitting New Zealander Colin Munro, who has been on Islamabad United’s roster since 2020, will be the team mentor for Rawalpindi. Former Pakistan captain and PCB Hall of Famer Javed Miandad will be the roving umbrella mentor, helping and assisting all the sides. The PCB also confirmed the player draft for the tournament to be played on a single-league basis will be held in Lahore on 6 September. Details around the draft process will be announced shortly. Over 140 players from Afghanistan, Australia, Austria, Bangladesh, Belgium, Canada, Denmark, England, Ireland, Nepal, the Netherlands, Saudi Arabia, Singapore, Scotland, Sri Lanka, West Indies, Zimbabwe and the United Arab Emirates have completed their registrations for the tournament through their respective cricket boards as well as clubs and professional representative submissions. PCB Chief Executive Faisal Hasnain said: “There is tremendous interest within and outside Pakistan about this league and we have maintained that momentum by today confirming the city names and their mentors. The six cities mirror our domestic cricket structure. This will not only provide talented teenagers with opportunities to showcase their talent to the world, but will also encourage them to play quality cricket in an environment they have never faced before. “The Pakistan Junior League dovetails very nicely with the PCB’s Development Programme, through which we organise schools, clubs, City Cricket Association, Cricket Association and PCB-organised 50-over and three-day tournaments. As the game’s regulatory and governing body in Pakistan, it is our responsibility to attract and create chances for our talented youth so that they not only make a career as a professional cricketer, but also solidify our bench-strength. “Instead of selling team rights, the PCB has made a strategic decision to take complete ownership of the inaugural edition. This gives us the chance to present to the world and to all our valued commercial partners that this is an event that has high value, context and is here to stay. “While the process for the sale of other commercial inventory is ongoing and we remain confident of attracting high-quality sponsors, I want to thank all the investors who expressed their interest in procuring team naming rights. We will continue the discussions with them after the completion of the tournament, with a future aim of building a long-term relationship.”
More than 140 foreign players register for PJL
Sports Bulletin Report LAHORE:-The Pakistan Junior League received another shot in the arm as more than 140 players completed their registrations for the tournament through their respective cricket boards as well as clubs and professional representative submissions. The PCB has received a great response from cricket boards around the world who wholeheartedly appreciated and backed this unique concept of providing emerging cricket stars a world-class platform for displaying their talent and skills. South Africa and New Zealand cricket boards while offering their support for the PJL were not in a position to nominate players for the first season as the event dates clash with the academic examinations of their eligible players. PCB has received player entries from eight Test playing (ICC full member) boards which include Afghanistan, Australia, Bangladesh, England, Ireland, Sri Lanka, the West Indies and Zimbabwe. Besides the Test playing nations, the PCB has also received player nominations from Austria, Belgium, Canada, Denmark, Nepal, The Netherlands, Saudi Arabia, Singapore, Scotland and the UAE. Meanwhile, through the PJL social media campaign more than 2500 videos were submitted by aspiring cricketers from all over Pakistan. The videos are being assessed by PCB coaches and the final list of players selected from the campaign who would be added to the draft will be shared in due course.  Players born on or after 1 September 2003 are eligible for the PJL 2022 edition. The inaugural edition of the PJL will be held at the Gaddafi Stadium, Lahore from 6 to 21 October. The final list of players eligible for the draft including foreign nominations will be shared before the draft. PJL Tournament Director Nadeem Khan said: “We want to thank the cricket boards that have backed this unique concept that will potentially redefine the junior cricket landscape not only in Pakistan but around the world. “The Pakistan Cricket Board is fully focussed on delivering a quality event that will not only provide a platform to teenage stars but will also inspire millions of children as well as aspiring cricketers in their early to mid-teens. “This event is a potential game changer for youth cricket and the strong nominations list received by the PCB is an indication of the interest of the cricketing world in the PJL.”
Pakistan Juniors Cricket League 2022
Sir Vivian Richards to reunite with Javed Miandad at Pakistan Junior League Sports Bulletin Report LAHORE:-Two cricket legends Sir Vivian Richards of the West Indies and Pakistan’s Javed Miandad, will reunite at October’s Pakistan Junior League after King Viv was named as one of the team mentors by the Pakistan Cricket Board. Richards joins Javed, Shahid Afridi, Shoaib Malik, Daren Sammy, Colin Munro and Imran Tahir as league mentors. The inaugural edition of the tournament will run from 6-21 October at the headquarters of Pakistan cricket, the Gaddafi Stadium, Lahore. Richards and Miandad dominated world cricket with their breath taking talent and match-winning performances in the 1970s and 80s. They last played against each other in the Nehru Cup final in Kolkata on 1 November 1989 when Pakistan won by four wickets with one ball remaining. Richards has also been a part of Quetta Gladiators’ campaign in six of seven HBL Pakistan Super Leagues and also helped them win the title in 2019. Richards, a two-time World Cup winner, averaged over 50 in Tests following his 8,540 runs in 121 matches, while he scored 6,721 runs at 47 in 187 ODIs. The Antiguan was also handy with the ball, taking 32 Test and 118 ODI wickets. In 2000, Richards was voted as one of Wisden’s five Cricketers of the Century, while in December 2002, he was chosen by Wisden as the greatest ODI batsman and as the third greatest Test cricket batter. In 2013 when Wisden selected the best Test team across 150 years of Test history, it slotted Richards at number-three. Javed scored 8832 runs at 52.57 with the help of 23 centuries in his prolific Test career that spanned 124 Tests. The legendary batter also featured in 233 ODIs scoring 7381 runs at 41.70 with the help of eight centuries. Sir Vivian Richards said: “I am absolutely thrilled at reuniting with my mate Javed Miandad at the Pakistan Junior League with whom I cherish some great memories from our playing days. Miandad was a fighter and a tough competitor, and it will be lovely to be working alongside him at the Pakistan Junior League, which is an exciting and innovative concept. “During my playing days, I always admired the talent Pakistan produced and this belief strengthened during my time with Quetta Gladiators at the HBL Pakistan Super League. The PCB have gone one step further by introducing age-group franchise cricket, which will help in further nurturing and developing outstanding talent. “I think the Pakistan Junior League is a tremendous tool for further consolidating Pakistan cricket’s foundations by unearthing and developing quality talent.” Javed Miandad said: “I am really excited at the opportunity of working with Sir Vivian Richards who remains one of the greatest players to play the game. The Pakistan Junior League is an innovative and exciting concept and provides a great platform to junior players. I am sure that the league will help introduce some incredible future talent that will serve Pakistan cricket for the decades to come. “The PCB deserves a lot of credit for this initiative which will be the first in the cricketing world, During my stint at the PJL I would endeavour to help youngsters in their quest of improvement in their game as I am a firm believer that with strong basics you can build a solid game that can help you in all formats of the game. “Teenage years are the best for honing skills as a cricketer and the players involved in the event will have a wonderful opportunity of showcasing their talent at a world-class and competitive environment.”
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