The Durban Heat unveiled themselves to the media and the people of Durban at their launch on Friday ahead of the Mzansi Super League (MSL) which starts on 16 November.
Many of the players, administrators and prominent Durban faces were at the official launch; as Zulu dancers entertained the crowd.
Three of the Durban-raised players answered questions ahead of the tournament that kicks off with a game betwen the Cape Town Blitz and Tshwane Spartans at Newlands.
“We were pretty nervous going into the draft but we are really happy with how our team came out in the end,” CEO of KZN Cricket Heinrich Strydom said.
“Our vision was to get as many local players as we could and fill the other spots with match winners and with 13 international cricketers and eight Hollywoodbets Dolphins, we are excited for the tournament.”
Coach Grant Morgan had many sleepless nights in the build up to the draft and he heaped praise on his brains trust for picking the best possible squad in the end.
“Having (assistant coach) Imraan (Khan) there helping was hugely important and we plotted and planned as many different outcomes as we could.
“To have him, the CEO and our convenor of selectors there helped hugely in us making all our decisions for the right reasons,” Morgan commented.
The Heat welcome back Kyle Abbott to Durban after many years with the Dolphins and he is looking forward to contributing to the side.
“It’s great to be involved in a tournament like this in your home country,” the former Proteas seamer said.
“I’ve always loved playing cricket at Kingsmead and I cannot wait to get back there and play in front of the Durban faithful.”
Durban Heat Fixtures:
18 Nov Durban Heat v Cape Town Blitz Kingsmead, Durban
21 Nov Durban Heat v Tshwane Spartans Kingsmead, Durban
23 Nov Nelson Mandela Giants v Durban Heat St George’s, Port Elizabeth
28 Nov Durban Heat v Paarl Rocks Kingsmead, Durban
30 Nov Jozi Stars v Durban Heat Wanderers Stadium, Johannesburg
02 Dec Paarl Rocks v Durban Heat Boland Park, Paarl
05 Dec Durban Heat v Nelson Mandela Giants Kingsmead, Durban
07 Dec Durban Heat v Jozi Stars Kingsmead, Durban
09 Dec Cape Town Blitz v Durban Heat Newlands, Cape Town
12 Dec Tshwane Spartans v Durban Heat SuperSport Park, Centurion
Durban Heat Squad: Hashim Amla, Rashid Khan, David Miller, Heinrich Klaasen, Kyle Abbott, Keshav Maharaj, Khaya Zondo, Albie Morkel, Marchant de Lange, Vernon Philander, Brandon Mavuta, Temba Bavuma, Morné van Wyk, Okuhle Cele, Sarel Erwee, Tladi Bokako