Cricket Hong Kong

Big Bash million-dollar man Chris Lynn signs for Hung Hom JD Jaguars in Hong Kong T20 Blitz

The 27-year-old is the first overseas player to be announced for the 2018 tournament, with more big names expected

PUBLISHED : Tuesday, 14 November, 2017, 5:30pm
UPDATED : Tuesday, 14 November, 2017, 9:03pm

Australia’s first T20 million-dollar man, Chris Lynn, has signed for the Hung Hom JD Jaguars in February’s Hong Kong T20 Blitz, with more quality names expected to be announced as franchises strengthen their line-ups.

The 27-year-old Queenslander who sparked the hashtag #Lynsannity is one of the world’s leading T20 exponents and last month signed an A$1 million (HK$5.96 million), five-year deal with the Brisbane Heat in Australia’s Big Bash League. He was also the number one pick in the recent Pakistan Super League draft.

He is the first overseas player to be signed up by any of the five franchises for the Mission Road tournament from February 6-11.

“I’m really looking forward to coming to Hong Kong next February, I’ve heard great things about the growth of cricket there and look forward to experiencing something new,” said Lynn, who will join retained players Nizakat Khan and Kinchit Shah and quality draft picks such as Tanveer Ahmed, Adil Mehmood and Kyle Christie in the Jaguars side.

“It’s always exciting to have a new challenge and hopefully I can help the Jaguars lift the trophy. The scores were pretty high last year so it looks like a very entertaining tournament for the fans.”

Jaguars management were unable to reveal the cost of signing such a marquee player, saying they are bound by contract.

Watch Chris Lynn’s six against Shaun Tait

Also taking part in the tournament are defending champions Kowloon Cantons, whose captain Babar Hayat was recently picked by the Kerala Kings for the T10 League, City Kaitak, Galaxy Gladiators Lantau and Hong Kong Island United.

“Chris Lynn would be an automatic choice in any T20 team, be it international or franchise cricket,” Jaguars co-owner Susan Lulla said.

“We were very keen to bring him to play for us and the moment we knew he was recovering well from surgery, we wasted no time in signing him up.

“After picking some of the best bowlers from Hong Kong cricket, we will have an explosive batsman in our top order to further add to our impressive batting line-up.”

Last year, the Jaguars featured top overseas talent Darren Sammy, Johan Botha, James Franklin, Jonathan Foo and Mohammad Naveed.

In Australia’s Big Bash League, Lynn’s drawing power is equal to that of the likes of West Indian Chris Gayle and England’s Kevin Pietersen. One of the highlights of the tournament was his massive 124-metre six off Shaun Tait.

Lynn also holds the record with Gautam Gambhir for the highest opening partnership in IPL history with his 93 off 41 balls in a stand of 164 for the Kolkata Knight Riders.

Spectators in Hong Kong will now be treated to his power hitting while wearing the pink of the Jaguars.

The Jaguars – co-owned by Ninad Shah, Harsh Shah and Susan Lulla – have three goals in cricket: to achieve via great performances, to entertain by playing passionate cricket and to popularise cricket in Hong Kong.

“The Jaguars have done a fantastic job to secure Chris Lynn who is one of the world’s most exciting players. It’s a fantastic outcome for the tournament and Hong Kong Cricket,” said Max Abbot, Cricket Hong Kong’s head of tournaments.

“All teams are working really hard to finalise their signings for 2018 and it’s looking promising that we will at least equal if not better the extraordinary talent we had in 2017.

“The Blitz already has a reputation for attracting the best players in the world and the Jaguars have already begun to enhance that for the coming season.”

Also in the Jaguars team are Ninad Deveng Shah, Nadeem Ahmed, Scott McKechnie, Damien Yee, Aarush Bhagwat and Rana Nasrulla.