• Gibbs wants ‘smarter’ cricket in T10 League

    Former South African batsman Herschelle Gibbs is ‘very excited’ by the opportunity to coach a string of international stars in the T10 League.

    Gibbs has been named head coach of the Rajputs, who sport the services of New Zealand batsman Brendon McCullum, England fast bowler Tymal Mills, West Indian all-rounder Carlos Brathwaite, Australian duo Ben Dunk and Chris Lynn, and others.

    ‘It is all about skill. You want to have all your skills covered. We are looking to play smart cricket. The key is in the preparation – we must play smarter, not necessarily harder. I’m very excited,’ he said at the tournament’s player draft earlier this week.

    ‘We want to win the big moments. There is no reason we can’t go into this competition with confidence. We have a lot of batting firepower at the top of the order and you don’t have to look deeper than that.

    ‘Then there’s Brathwaite, who is fantastic, and Mills is quick and has a great record in Sharjah. Afghanistan’s Mohammad Shahzad is a great character, too. He is a bit of a pocket rocket. You want guys like him who can tee off straight away.’

    The Rajputs squad also includes two Pakistanis – seamer Rahat Ali and all-rounder Mohammad Hafeez.

    ‘Rahat ticks all the boxes and can hopefully keep ticking those boxes. Hafeez offers a lot with bat and ball and he knows his game. We will rely on his experience in a pressure-driven environment. He is an agile fielder as well. He will bring a calmness to posting and setting totals,’ added Gibbs.

    The nine-day, eight-team tournament is in its second season and will be played from 23 November to 2 December 2018.

    Kerala are the reigning champions, after beating the Punjabi Legends in 2017’s final.

    Photo: Chris Ricco/Backpagepix

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    Jonhenry Wilson