Tshwane Spartans captain AB de Villiers poses with fans at the Mzansi Super League launch at the V&A Waterfront on Thursday. Photo: Chris Ricco/BackpagePix

CAPE TOWN – Cricket South Africa chief executive Thabang Moroe admits the Mzansi Super League will “hit a few niggles here and there”, but is very excited ahead of the tournament opener at Newlands on Friday evening.

Local team Cape Town Blitz will get the action under way when they host former Proteas superstar AB de Villiers’ Tshwane Spartans at the storied old ground (7pm start).

The Blitz will be led by England international Dawid Malan.  

Moroe and his team have worked tirelessly to get the new tournament off the ground after last year’s debacle, when CSA were forced to cancel the T20 Global League.

“I think accumulatively, I have slept about 12 hours (in the last month), given the fact that I have also woken up in the middle of the night to watch the ladies (Proteas Women in the ICC World T20) play in the Caribbean there.

“It has been plenty of sleepless nights,” Moroe told Independent Media at the MSL T20 launch at the V&A Waterfront on Thursday.

“We are very excited, but also very nervous. I am hoping that everything will pull through as planned.

“We know that because we are doing things a little bit differently, we are expecting to hit a few niggles here and there.

“We are not going to get everything perfect from ball one, but as the tournament goes on, we will eventually get to a picture that we want to see.”

The MSL T20 received a major boost on Wednesday when in addition to all the matches being broadcast exclusively live by the South African Broadcasting Corporation (SABC) on its free-to-air television and radio platforms, CSA signed a deal that will incorporate global coverage via Global Sports Commerce (GSC).

The GSC have formed a partnership with Sony Pictures Networks India (SPN) to show the first ever season of the MSL T20 to the lucrative Indian and sub-continent market.

“This shows the hard work that we have been putting in behind the scenes. We want this tournament to be a truly international one to reach the standards of the Big Bash and IPL, and this is one of the missing pieces of the puzzle that needed to be put together,” Moroe said.

“I expect this tournament to show us some names we have never seen before.

“I expect other team owners and coaches out there to see what talent we as South Africans possess, and snap them up and include them in other leagues.”


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