Pathirana joins Bravo at TKR; Barbados Royals pick Athanaze, Theekshana

Sri Lanka slinger Matheesha Pathirana and South Africa batter Rilee Rossouw are set to make their CPL debuts after having been picked by Trinbago Knight Riders at the draft. Pathirana, 20, will reunite with Dwayne Bravo, having worked closely with him during his IPL-winning stint with Chennai Super Kings earlier this year.
Bravo, who was Super Kings’ bowling coach at the IPL, will return as a player for the upcoming MLC competition and the CPL that follows. Knight Riders also signed Afghanistan left-arm wristspinner Noor Ahmad, who was a vital part of the Gujarat Titans side that reached the IPL 2023 final. Noor, 18, will add more mystery and guile to a spin attack that already includes Sunil Narine, Akeal Hosein and Mark Deyal, who can also turn the ball both ways.
Shreyanka Patil, who was among the breakout stars of the inaugural WPL, where she played for Royal Challengers Bangalore, is now set to become the first Indian to feature in the WCPL after earning a deal with Guyana Amazon Warriors.
Colin Munro, who has been a familiar face for TKR over the years, will not be part of the CPL this season. But Martin Guptill will provide the New Zealand flavour for TKR. Guptill will also be in action for the Knight Riders franchise in the MLC that precedes the CPL. In November 2022, Guptill had handed back his New Zealand central contract to pursue opportunities in T20 leagues around the world.
Alick Athanaze, who recently smashed the joint-fastest half-century on ODI debut, off 26 balls, went to Barbados Royals as their round 6 pick. Athanaze is yet to make his debut in the CPL. Seamer Akeem Jordan, who had also made his ODI debut during West Indies’ recent tour of the UAE, will join Athanaze at Royals.
Big-hitting South African wicketkeeper-batter Donovan Ferreira, who was with Rajasthan Royals at the IPL, will be a Royal at the CPL too. Ferreira can also bowl a bit of offspin and it is for these multidimensional skills that Jo’burg Super Kings had splurged R5.5 (USD 320,000) million for him at the SA20 auction.

Sri Lankans in demand

Pathirana’s Sri Lanka and Chennai Super Kings team-mate Maheesh Theekshana has joined Barbados Royals. Theekshana was selected by TKR in CPL 2022, but he didn’t secure an NoC to play at the time.

St Lucia Kings, meanwhile, picked both Dasun Shanaka and Bhanuka Rajapaksa at the draft. Both players have played in the IPL, but this will be their first appearance at the CPL. Rajapaksa’s left-handedness and explosive power could be key for a Kings line-up that could potentially include a number of right-handers. Zimbabwe’s talismanic allrounder Sikandar Raza, who has previously won the CPL with TKR, will join the Sri Lankans at Kings this season.

Cariah returns to the CPL

Legspin-bowling allrounder Yannic Cariah, who has played just four CPL games so far, the last of which came in 2016 for TKR, has a chance to add to his tally, having been picked by St Kitts & Nevis Patriots. Cariah is currently on the sidelines, recovering from a nose fracture suffered during training at the World Cup Qualifier in Zimbabwe.
South Africa left-arm fingerspinner George Linde and teenage Afghanistan wristspinner Izharulhaq Naveed will assist Cariah in Patriots’ spin attack. In addition to having stints in the PSL and BBL, Naveed has had a taste of the IPL, having been a net bowler with RCB. At the IPL, Naveed had previously worked with Malolan Rangarajan, RCB’s head of scouting, who is now Patriots’ new head coach.

Tallawahs, Amazon Warriors retain core

Defending champions Jamaica Tallawahs managed to get back Imad Wasim, Mohammad Amir and Chris Green who were all part of their title-winning run in CPL 2022. With Tallawahs trading Rovman Powell to Royals, Brandon King has been appointed as the new captain of the franchise.

Amazon Warriors, too, ensured that their core remained intact by re-signing Imran Tahir and Rahmanullah Gurbaz. This, after having retained the likes of Shimron Hetmyer, Odean Smith, Romario Shepherd and Keemo Paul ahead of the draft.

Ronsford Beaton, the Guyana seamer who recently had his bowling action cleared, also found a place in Amazon Warriors’ squad.
The 2023 season of the CPL will be played across five countries in the Caribbean from August 16 to September 24. For the third consecutive year, the CPL will overlap with the Hundred, the 100-balls-a-side competition in England that runs from August 1 to August 27 this year.

Men’s CPL squads

Trinbago Knight Riders: Kieron Pollard, Dwayne Bravo, Andre Russell, Sunil Narine, Nicholas Pooran, Rilee Rossouw, Akeal Hosein, Noor Ahmad, Martin Guptill, Jayden Seales, Matheesha Pathirana, Mark Deyal, Chadwick Walton, Terrance Hinds, Kadeem Alleyne, Jaden Carmichael

Barbados Royals: Rovman Powell, Jason Holder, Kyle Mayers, Maheesh Theekshana, Rassie van der Dussen, Alick Athanaze, Obed McCoy, Kevin Wickham, Roelof van der Merwe, Akeem Jordan, Rahkeem Cornwall, Donovan Ferreira, Justin Greaves, Joshua Bishop, Nyeem Young, Rivaldo Clarke, Ramon Simmonds

St Kitts & Nevis Patriots: Evin Lewis, Andre Fletcher, Shrefane Rutherford, Dominic Drakes, Sheldon Cottrell, George Linde, Yannic Cariah, Oshane Thomas, Corbin Bosch, Dewald Brevis, Jyd Goolie, Izharulhaq Naveed, Kofi James, Joshua da Silva, Ashmead Nedd, Johann Layne

St Lucia Kings: Faf du Plessis, Johnson Charles, Dasun Shanaka, Alzarri Joseph, Roston Chase, Jair McAllister, Sikandar Raza, Peter Hatzoglou, Bhanuka Rajapaksa, Roshon Primus, Jeavor Royal, Sadrack Descarte, Khary Pierre, Leonardo Julien, Matthew Forde, Kimani Melius, McKenny Clarke

Guyana Amazon Warriors: Imran Tahir, Shimron Hetmyer, Rahmanullah Gurbaz, Odean Smith, Romario Shepherd, Azam Khan, Shai Hope, Gudakesh Motie, Dwaine Pretorius, Kevlon Anderson, Kevin Sinclair, Keemo Paul, Chandrapaul Hemraj, Ronsford Beaton, Matthew Nandu, Junior Sinclair

Jamaica Tallawahs: Imad Wasim, Brandon King, Fabian Allen, Mohammad Amir, Naveen-ul-Haq, Chris Green, Jermaine Blackwood, Shamarh Brooks, Hayden Walsh Jr, Raymon Reifer, Amir Jangoo, Steven Taylor, Shamar Springer, Nicholson Gordon, Kirk McKenzie, Joshua James

Women’s CPL squads

Barbados Royals: Hayley Matthews, Afy Fletcher, Aaliyah Alleyne, Chinelle Henry, Rashada Williams, Jannillea Glasgow, Chedean Nation, Vanessa Watts, Qiana Joseph, Trishan Holder, Jahzara Claxton, Marizanne Kapp, Laura Harris, Gaby Lewis, Amanda-Jade Wellington

Guyana Amazon Warriors: Stafanie Taylor, Karishma Ramharack, Natasha McLean, Shermaine Campbelle, Shakiba Gajnabi, Shakera Selman, Sheneta Grimmond, Kaysia Schultz, Suzie Bates, Shabnim Ismail, Shreyanka Patil, Cherry-Ann Fraser, Ashmini Munisar, Djenaba Joseph, Sophie Devine

Trinbago Knight Riders: Deandra Dottin, Shamilla Connell, Anisa Mohammed, Kycia Knight, Kyshona Knight, Britney Cooper, Zaida James, Lee-Ann Kirby, Carena Noel, Samara Ramnath, Shunelle Sawh, Orla Prendergast, Mignon du Preez, Dane van Niekerk, Fran Jonas

Deivarayan Muthu is a sub-editor at ESPNcricinfo

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