Beyond the boundary – JD Jaguars hope to be part of Hong Kong cricket history
Owner Devang Shah wants his team to help take the tournament to the next level
Buying a franchise in the DTC Mobile Hong Kong T20 Blitz means more to owner Devang Shah than simply bankrolling a team to win a tournament. The Hung Hom JD Jaguars backer wants to be part of a historic event that could put Hong Kong on the global cricketing map.
Shah, a Hong Kong-based diamond dealer, wants to add a bit of sparkle to the competition and help to make it an international success.
“We want to support Hong Kong cricket and want to help make this tournament very successful,” said Shah, whose sons Kinchit – a Hong Kong international – and Ninad were drafted by the Jaguars. “I want to see the tournament go to the next level and see more players from overseas come to play in it.
“This is a great way for Hong Kong cricket to gain more exposure and local players can learn from experienced overseas recruits. It will only help to improve cricket in Hong Kong and take it to the next level.”
The Jaguars take on GII Lantau Galaxy Riders in the opening match on Friday at Mission Road. Also taking part are Kowloon Cantons, featuring former Australian skipper Michael Clarke, and Woodworm Island Warriors, who have also opted for Australian players.
Shah decided to bring in two players from Mumbai – Vinit Indulkar and Doraiswamy Subramanian – as their two overseas cricketers and UAE’s Mohammed Naveed as their associate player.
“We don’t have big names but the two players from India are Ranji Trophy cricketers and they play to a very high standard,” said Shah.
Subramanian is an opening batsman and also keeps wicket while Indulkar , who once played in the Indian Premier League for Kolkata, bats in the middle order.
Also in the Jaguars team are Hong Kong players Nizakat Khan and Chris Carter, while Kinchit will captain the side.
The Blitz, from May 27-29, is set to be the biggest international cricket tournament in Hong Kong since the Cricket Sixes, which the Hong Kong Cricket Association is trying to revive this year.
The four teams will play each other in a single round-robin with the top two teams facing off in the final on the Sunday.
Clarke is so far the biggest name to sign up for the event, though fans can expect to see some quality cricket from the visiting professionals from Australia and India.
The Warriors have gone for Australians Michael Hill and Will Sheridan, with Dutchman Michael Swart joining as their associate player. Galaxy Riders have delved into the talent-rich Delhi cricket scene.