Kathmandu: Everest Premier League (EPL) is another competition that cricket fans are waiting for after the Nepali national cricket team played a triangular series under the ICC Cricket World Cup League-2 in Oman recently.
The fourth edition of the EPL, which brings together Nepali players and foreign star players, is being held at the Tribhuvan Cricket Ground in Kirtipur from September 26 to 30. The EPL was postponed due to the corona epidemic, even though it was said that the fourth edition would be held in March, 2020.
The participating franchises have already made internal preparations for the competition. Almost all the teams are in the process of signing the contract of foreign players who are the center of attraction in the EPL.
According to the organizers, all the six franchise clubs of the EPL will have to include three foreign players in the mandatory team. The names of foreign players who come to play in the EPL have received a lot of attention. This time from former Pakistan captain Shahid Afridi to successful Bangladesh batsman Tamil Iqbal are coming to play in the EPL.
Although the franchises tried to bring in famous T20 players from Australia to England, it was not possible due to the second leg of the IPL 2021 which started in the UAE on Sunday and the upcoming ICC T20 World Cup.
Therefore, many players who are not in the team to play T20 World Cup are coming to Nepal. The T20 World Cup is being hosted in the UAE and Oman from October 17 to November 14. But three Afghan players in the World Cup squad have signed contracts in the EPL and are coming to Nepal.
In which Mohammad Sahajad and Karim Jannat will play for Chitwan Tigers while Rahmanullah Gurbaj has signed for Kathmandu Kings XI. Similarly, players from Malaysia, Singapore and Bhutan are also coming to play EPL this time.
So far, a total of 24 foreign players have been contracted by 6 teams. All the six franchises competing in the EPL are betting on star players as much as possible.
Due to time constraints, many great players have gone to play in the IPL. However, only eight players from Test-recognized Sri Lanka are coming to play in the EPL. Among them are former national team opener Upul Tharanga and current star Asela Gunaratne.
Chitwan has so far signed five foreign players. Along with Sahazad and Karim Jannat, there are Sekuge Prasanna of Sri Lanka, Danis Aziz of Pakistan and Bhirandeep Singh of Malaysia.
The Lalitpur Patriots, led by former winners and national team captain Gyanendra Malla, have signed Osada Fernando and Sandun Virakodi of Sri Lanka, Omarzai of Afghanistan and Mikyong Dorjee of Bhutan.
Former runners-up Bhairahawa Gladiators have signed Sri Lanka’s Upul Tharanga and Dhammika Prasad along with Bangladesh’s Tamim Iqwal and Malaysia’s Servin Muniendi.
Pokhara have signed Kesarik Williams from Test nation West Indies and Richard Levy from South Africa. Similarly, Pokhara has also signed Sri Lankan Asela Gunaratne and Sahan Arasige.
Similarly, one-time winners Biratnagar Warriors have signed all-rounder Sikandar Raja of Zimbabwe, Hemraj Chandrapool of West Indies, Ryan Khan Pathan of Canada and Dilsan Munavira of Sri Lanka.
Kathmandu has signed Shahid Afridi and Gurbaj as well as Janak Prakash of Singapore.
Dinesh Chandimal of Sri Lanka, who has been contracted by Bhairahawa, and Alex Blake of England, who has been contracted by Lalitpur, have been ruled out.
Organizer EPL Pralika Managing Director Aamir Akhtar has been saying that the arrival of foreign star players will further expand the scope of EPL and will also help Nepal’s tourism.
From those who have played in various leagues around the world, from those who have played in the T20 World Cup to those who have been selected in foreign franchise leagues for the first time, Nepal is coming to play EPL this time.
Foreign players announced so far
- Oshada Pernando: Sri Lanka
- Azmatullah Omarzai: Afghanistan
- Sandun Virakodi: Sri Lanka
- Mikyo Dorjee: Bhutan
- Bhairahawa Gladiators
- Upul Tharanga: Sri Lanka
- Dhammika Prasad: Sri Lanka
- Tamim Equal: Bangladesh
- Servin Muniendi: Malaysia
- Richard Levy: South Africa
- Kesarik Williams: West Indies
- Asela Gunaratne: Sri Lanka
- Sahan Arasasige: Sri Lanka
Kathmandu Kings 11
- Shahid Afridi: Pakistan
- Janak Prakash: Singapore
- Rahmanullah Gurbaj: Afghanistan
- Mohammad Sahajad: Afghanistan
- Karim Jannat: Afghanistan
- Danis Ajit: Pakistan
- Sekuge Prasanna: Sri Lanka
- Bhirandeep Singh: Malaysia
- Alexander the Great: Zimbabwe
- Ryan Khan Pathan: Canada
- Chandrapul Hemraj: West Indies
- Dilsan Munavira: Sri Lanka
How many players from which country?
- Sri Lanka: 8
- Afghanistan: 4
- West Indies: 2
- Pakistan: 2
- Malaysia: 2
- South Africa: 1
- Bangladesh: 1
- Zimbabwe: 1
- Singapore: 1
- Canada: 1
- Bhutan: 1