CSA T20 League: Amla named Durban Heats’ South African marquee star

County Championship: Hashim Amla's blockathon helps Surrey clinch draw vs Hampshire
County Championship: Hashim Amla's blockathon helps Surrey clinch draw vs Hampshire

The Kingsmead Cricket Stadium-based team for the upcoming Mzansi Super League beginning in November has been officially unveiled as the Durban Heats with Proteas star Hashim Amla announced as their Marquee South African player.

The team names and South African marquee players named were revealed at an event in Johannesburg on Monday. “We’re excited to have Hashim returning to KZN to represent the Durban Heat,” KZN Cricket CEO Heinrich Strydom mentioned.

“He (Amla) brings with him a wealth of experience both at the highest level as well as at Kingsmead so he has a huge amount of knowledge to share. He is one of the most loved cricketers in the country and I am sure that having a player like him in our squad will be a hit with the crowds,” Strydom added.

Dolphins coach Grant Morgan had led the team to the RAM SLAM T20 Challenge final last season. Along with assistant coach Imraan Khan, team manager Anderson Ndovela, physiotherapist Nick Moffit and trainer Gavin Muir, the Kingsmead coaching set-up remains unchanged but for the addition of analyst Adhishwar Pillai.

“It is great that we can keep our back-room team together for this tournament. They have proved that they are a strong unit, understand how to win T20 matches and come in to the tournament with a proven track record. We are looking forward to see what sort of squad we put together at the draft later this week,” Strydom added.

Amla’s return puts the Durban Heat in a strong position even before picking up their international marquee player at the draft later this week.

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The team will have to make a choice from England stars Jason Roy, Eoin Morgan and Dawid Malan, West Indian heroes Chris Gayle and Dwayne Bravo as well as young Afghanistan sensation Rashid Khan.

Gayle, Bravo and Roy have a connection with the Durban. Caribbean icons Gayle and Bravo have both been involved with the Dolphins teams over the years, while Roy was born and schooled in Durban before immigrating to the United Kingdom in 2000.