England World Cup winner Liam Plunkett signs on for Major League Cricket’s inaugural season in the US after being drafted by Australian Aaron Finch’s San Francisco Unicorns
- Major League Cricket is set to launch in summer played in Dallas from July 13-30
- It will be the largest-scale T20 cricket tournament held in US, featuring six teams
- Click here for all your latest international sports news from DailyMail.com
England’s World Cup winner Liam Plunkett is among the big names joining the USA’s inaugural T20 season after being taken in Major League Cricket’s first-ever draft.
Major League Cricket is set to launch this summer with the tournament being played between July 13-30 in Dallas.
The league held its first player draft in Houston, Texas Sunday night where Plunkett, 37, was picked by the San Francisco Unicorns.
The fast bowler, who is married to an American, was part of the England side that won the 50-overs World Cup in 2019.
But the former Surrey man has not played for England since the 2019 World Cup final and quit English cricket to play Stateside in 2021.
England’s World Cup winner Liam Plunkett is among the names joining Major League Cricket
The fast bowler was part of the England side that won the 50-overs World Cup in 2019
The 37-year-old was picked up by the San Francisco Unicorns in the first draft on Sunday
The seamer will be captained by former Australia skipper Aaron Finch in San Francisco.
Finch was among six overseas signings announced during Major League Cricket’s (MLC) ‘Domestic Player Draft’ on Sunday, in which each of the six teams picked nine US-based players.
‘So excited to be a part of @MLCricket @SFOUnicorns,’ tweeted Finch, who captained Australia in white-ball cricket before announcing his retirement from internationals last month.
The 36-year-old will be joined by his former team mate Marcus Stoinis at the Unicorns as well as Victoria fast bowler Brody Couch, whose mother is American, making him eligible for the draft.
Wicketkeeper Quinton de Kock, who previously captained South Africa across all three formats, will play for the Seattle Orcas, alongside Australia all-rounder Mitchell Marsh.
With Finch, Stoinis and Marsh all on board, three members of Australia’s 2021 T20 World Cup-winning side have already signed on to the new league.
Meanwhile, Washington Freedom, the team based in the nation’s capital, have drafted in De Kock’s South African teammate Anrich Nortje and Sri Lanka spinner Wanindu Hasaranga.
In the draft, US internationals Monank Patel and Steven Taylor were snapped up by MI New York, while former Canadian captain Nitish Kumar went to the Los Angeles Knight Riders.
The seamer will be captained by former Australia skipper Aaron Finch in San Francisco
Quinton de Kock, who previously captained South Africa, will play for the Seattle Orcas
More international signings are expected to be announced in the coming weeks but the tournament’s English summer scheduling creates conflicts for England internationals meaning they are likely to not be available.
Australia’s multi-format players also were not allowed to sign up for the tournament, given it clashes with the Ashes series in England.
MLC is set to be the largest-scale T20 cricket tournament held in the USA, featuring six teams, who will play 19 matches across 18 days.
Four of the teams, the Seattle Orcas, MI New York, Los Angeles Knight Raiders and Texas Super Kings, have significant financial backing from Indian Premier League – India’s men’s T20 league – sides.
Two other franchises, the Washington Freedom and San Francisco Unicorns, have received funding from American investors as well as, two Australian teams, Cricket NSW and Cricket Victoria respectively.
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