Pakistan Superstar Shahid Afridi to sign on as Qalandar's Icon Player
Dubai, United Arab Emirates - September 23, 2019: Team Qalandars is returning to the UAE capital this November, as the latest franchise to join the revamped Abu Dhabi T10. The addition of the popular team, representing Pakistan's strong cricketing tradition, underscores the diversity of the Abu Dhabi T10, and will resonate with the residents of Pakistan living in the UAE.
The Abu Dhabi T10, commencing on 14 November with a star-studded opening ceremony performance by a headline Bollywood entertainer, will see 29 fast-paced matches take place over 10 days ahead of the grand finale on 24 November 2019.
Announcing the arrival of the new team, His Excellency Aref Al Awani, General Secretary of Abu Dhabi Sports Council said: 'The announcement of the Qalandars' participation is a prestigious boost for Abu Dhabi T10's global profile and demonstrates the desire of international teams to come to Abu Dhabi as a destination for world class tournaments.
'Just like batting in cricket, we must recognize the importance of key partnerships and certainly our vision to bring the very best of cricket to Abu Dhabi would not have been possible without the cooperation of the Department of Culture and Tourism Abu Dhabi, T10 Sports Management, and the participating team franchises,' concluded H.E. Al Awani.
T10, in which only 120 balls are played in a fast-paced 90-minute game, was first introduced to the UAE in 2017. With players including England's ICC World Cup-winning captain Eoin Morgan, Shane Watson, Rashid Khan, Andre Russell, Lasith Malinga and Darren Sammy, the game has proven popular with audiences locally and internationally.
Fawad Rana, the Qalandars Chairman, commented: 'I am delighted for the Qalandars to join the Abu Dhabi T10 as we look forward to helping build a new legacy for cricket in the UAE capital. The game is built on big stars and fast action, so Qalandars are very excited for the opportunity to bring iconic players like Shahid Afridi to play for the fans here in Abu Dhabi and around the world.'
Concluding, Rana commented: 'My thanks to the Abu Dhabi Sports Council, to DCT Abu Dhabi, and to Abu Dhabi Cricket, for their support and promotion of the Abu Dhabi T10. I also express my admiration and thanks to the founder of the T10, Shaji Ul Mulk, whose vision has been instrumental in creating this great sporting event.'
CEO of Abu Dhabi Cricket, Matthew Boucher, commented on the announcement: 'Through securing a renowned franchise such as the Qalandars, Abu Dhabi Sports Council has yet again demonstrated its mandate to host world-class international cricketing and sporting events. We have worked hard this year to prepare Zayed Cricket Stadium to be the new home of T10 cricket for the next five years,
'I would encourage all cricket fans in the UAE to book their tickets for Zayed Cricket Stadium well in advance of our November kick-off,' Boucher concluded.
The first match of the Abu Dhabi T10 2019 will take place on 15 November 2019.