Phil DeFreitas, formerly of England and Leicestershire, will walk out today to face Australia in the first match of the 2005 tournament in the colours of his new home - Hong Kong. Let's hope DeFreitas has got over his bewilderment at being picked for the SAR. 'I was amazed to hear that I had been picked to play for Hong Kong at the Sixes,' DeFreitas admitted last Sunday. 'It will be good fun and I will enjoy the opportunity to play in this tournament again.' The local selectors have really pushed the envelope this year when they picked Hong Kong Cricket Club player-coach DeFreitas in the seven-strong squad. In the past they have included players who are not necessarily eligible to play for Hong Kong at the international level - Ryan Eagleson is an example - but this is the first time that they have called up a player who has had only one domestic game to his credit. DeFreitas, who arrived in town last Friday, was included after Hong Kong coach and former Indian one-day international star Robin Singh decided to play for his country after initially being picked to play for Hong Kong. The class of 2005, captained by Afzaal Haider, has undergone more changes to its appearance than a nervous tai tai going through her wardrobe before a blind date. Local fans can only hope that the end result will be equally gratifying, with the SAR taking home the catch of the day. The task is immense for the only non-test playing country in the competition. They will have to depend on a little bit of magic from DeFreitas if they are to enter the Cup competition for the first time in their 11-year history. 'Our goal this year is definitely to reach the Cup,' says stalwart Rahul Sharma, who is playing in his eighth Hong Kong Sixes. If Sharma, 45, provides the years of experience, then at the other end of the spectrum is 15-year-old Irfan Ahmed. The teenager won his berth in the team after another withdrawal - that of Hussain Butt. Butt, the hard-hitting all-rounder who was the player of the tournament last year, pulled out of the squad as he wanted to pursue his dream of playing for Pakistan at the international level. He has left for Pakistan to chase his rainbow. Last year Butt took Hong Kong all the way to a Plate triumph. He will be missed this weekend. Whether other members of the squad, including Tabarak Dar, Munir Dar and Adam Gunthorpe, can fill his shoes is doubtful. Hong Kong will now look towards DeFreitas to provide the spark. The 44-test, 103-ODI veteran is more than capable. In 1993, DeFreitas played a winning hand as England won the tournament, beating a Sri Lankan team comprising Arjuna Ranatunga and Sanath Jayasuriya. DeFreitas was named player of the tournament that year. 'I have played in this tournament on three occasions. In the last year, South Africa prevented us [England] from winning a hat-trick of Cup titles,' he recounted. 'I also remember we each got about a $1,000 for winning. I didn't know the prize money had gone up so much,' said DeFreitas. Times have changed. And so have circumstances, with DeFreitas walking out for Hong Kong today. 'I was amazed to hear that I had been picked to play for Hong Kong at the Sixes'