Kieron Pollard has been named captain of MI Emirates, the team owned by the owners of Mumbai Indians in the ILT20, while MI Cape Town, the SA20 team owned by the same group, will be led by Rashid Khan. Both the tournaments, in their inaugural season, will be played between January and February next year.
MI Cape Town will play the first match of the SA20 against Paarl Royals on January 10 at their home ground in Cape Town. They recently announced Jofra Archer, who is also part of Mumbai Indians, as their wildcard signing for the tournament. Archer hadn’t played competitively since March 2021, but made an encouraging comeback in a three-day game for England Lions against the England Test team in Abu Dhabi.
At MI Cape Town, Archer will have England colleagues Sam Curran, Liam Livingstone and Olly Stone for company, while the other big names in the line-up include Kagiso Rabada, Rassie van der Dussen and Dewald Brevis, as well as Rashid. Simon Katich is the head coach of the team.
MI Emirates, meanwhile, have big-ticket T20 stars in Dwayne Bravo, Nicholas Pooran, Trent Boult and Imran Tahir apart from Pollard. They will be coached by Shane Bond, who has been the bowling coach at Mumbai Indians since 2015, with Parthiv Patel, Vinay Kumar and James Franklin also part of the support staff, and Robin Singh the general manager of cricket.
“We have an amazing mix of talent, experience, and passion in both our captains,” Akash Ambani, chairman of Reliance Jio Infocomm, which owns the three teams, said in a statement. “I’m convinced that Polly and Rashid will take forward the MI ethos and MI brand of cricket. Both will work with our excellent coaching teams to infuse the MI spirit in MI Emirates and MI Cape Town and win the hearts of cricket fans in UAE and South Africa.”