The Hundred may be an unfamiliar format but the consensus at Sunday’s draft appeared to be that spin will be the way to win.
Next year’s debut edition of the England and Wales Cricket Board’s 100-ball tournament continued to take shape this weekend when the eight city-based franchises signed the bulk of their squads in a live televised event in London.
And slow bowlers were in demand as 21-year-old Afghanistan captain Rashid Khan was selected first overall while other regular spin options such as Sunil Narine, Imran Tahir, Mujeeb Ur Rehman, Moeen Ali, Glenn Maxwell and Liam Livingstone also picked up maximum £125,000 pay days.
“No one knows the format, no one understands the best way to win a 100-ball game,” said England all-rounder Sam Curran, whose Oval Invincibles team selected Narine with their first pick and added teenage Nepal leg-spinner Sandeep Lamichhane for £100,000.
“Once the teams are selected there’s going to be a lot of plans and tactics. No one knows how to play 100-ball cricket but so far it looks like they think spin is the one.”
While there maybe some quirks of the 100-ball game yet to be discovered, Curran – one of the England Test stars allocated prior to Sunday’s draft – said the best guide anyone could use to date was Twenty20.
“You look at the timing of the tournament, late in the summer, so the wickets are drier but generally in T20, it’s the spinners who win you a lot of games, in the middle overs they take a lot of wickets,” he said.
“All the spinners that have been picked are world class.”
A teleconference on Thursday could bring positive news for cricket fans.
The Australian’s peak moment at the helm came last year as he shepherded England to their first ever World Cup crown.
Any return would have to be considered in the future with Yorkshire’s players and staff having taken wage cuts due to the pandemic.
The traditional method of spit-polishing to produce movement through the air has been deemed too great a risk of transmitting coronavirus.
The Lancastrian was fresh off some standout displays in the 2003 World Cup.
Hales lost his place in last year’s World Cup-winning squad after news of a second failed test for recreational drugs.
The Warwickshire all-rounder is one on 18 bowlers to be selected for personalised practice.
The West Indies are due to arrive on these shores first this summer.
Broad took part in an individual training session at Trent Bridge.