GPCL Season 2 team structure finalised; Shivam Singh gets into IPL

GPCL Season 2 team structure finalised; Shivam Singh gets into IPL

In its very first season, the Global Power Cricket League (GPCL) T20 caught the imagination of the fans across the sporting world. Marquee international cricketers from different parts of the world featured in the tournament. The league, as part of the NRI Festival celebrations, also ensured that each team had Indian diaspora youth participation along with other players of that particular country.

The inaugural GPCL T20, held in Delhi in October this year, gave the fans a flavour of the world cup format as playing squads of countries like India, Australia, England, USA, Ireland, Scotland, South Africa, and Sri Lanka competed with each other. During the tournament, every team played three matches in the group stage before the knockout rounds. Indian Sapphires and Australian Golds were declared joint winners since rain played spoilsport in the final.

The Indian diaspora youth cricketers got the opportunity to rub shoulders with well-known international stars like Ian Bell, Munaf Patel, Callum Ferguson, and Kirk Edwards. The GPCL T20 garnered record-breaking viewership as Power Sportz – the organiser and official broadcaster of the event – telecasted the action in 95 territories worldwide.

Seeing the kind of interest the tournament generated in its maiden season, Kanthi D Suresh, the founder and editor-in-chief of Power Sportz, is keen to make the GPCL an annual sporting spectacle. She is fairly confident that the T20 league will take the cricketing world by storm in the second edition. In fact, the groundwork for season 2 is currently underway and the team structure has already been finalised.

GPCL Season 2 will have a similar tournament format as the first edition, although with an updated team structure, for each team from every country. The retailored team structure will not only enhance the quality of competition, but will also provide young cricketers from 6 to 8 countries a platform to showcase their talent and hone their skills, while playing alongside some of the best in the world.

The team structure for GPCL Season 2 is as follows:

1. Two marquee players in each team (international cricketers who have represented their country).

2. Seven first-class players in each team.

3. Two youth domestic players which will include one U-19 category and one U-23 category.

4. Three club/university level players.

5. One wildcard player who will be an internationally renowned sportsman/athlete.

Team Structure Guidelines:

• Each team will have a total of six Indian origin players (NRIs/ OCIs/PIOs) at minimum in their squad of 15. All players in the squad must be from that country’s nationality.

• Only cricketers with professional experience, i.e having played in tournaments sponsored/recognised, by the governing body of cricket in the country will be considered as FC players.

• The average squad age of each side will be 25-26 years

• The two youth domestic players in the U-19 and U-23 category must currently be of the age of 19 or below and 23 or below, for each category respectively.

Even before the start of GPCL T20, it was believed that the tournament can be a feeder to pick talent for big leagues like IPL. As it turned out, all-rounder Shivam Singh, who turned up for Indian Sapphires in the inaugural season, was roped in by Kings XI Punjab for a base price of Rs 20 lakhs at the IPL 2023 mini auction in Kochi on December 23.

GPCL is being seen as a great way to engage with and integrate the Indian diaspora.

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The New Indian Express