Aaron Finch, Marcus Stoinis and Mitch Marsh are among the Australians who will play Major League Cricket when the inaugural edition of the American Twenty20 competition begins in mid-July.
Set to be the largest-scale T20 cricket tournament held in the USA, the MLC will feature six teams – four of which have significant financial backing from IPL sides.
Two other franchises, the Washington Freedom and the San Francisco Unicorns, have received funding from American investors as well as Cricket NSW and Cricket Victoria respectively.
Yee (and we cannot stress this enough) haw 🇺🇸
Aaron Finch, Marcus Stoinis, Mitch Marsh and Brody Couch are among a number of Aussies heading to the USA this July for the first ever season of Major League Cricket ✍️🤠 pic.twitter.com/dNSmxzOzWL
— KFC Big Bash League (@BBL) March 20, 2023
As part of their partnerships, the Australian domestic cricket bodies will assist with the sport’s development in the USA as well as roster management and coaching.
The competition held its draft for American-based players on Monday (AEDT) but international signings were also unveiled, with rosters set to be finalised later this week.
Former Australian white-ball captain and opening batter Finch will captain the Unicorns and will be joined there by former international teammate and T20 globetrotter Marcus Stoinis.
Allrounder Marsh, who is starring for Australia in the ODI series against India, has been picked up by the Seattle Orcas, as has American-Australian quick Cameron Gannon.
Melbourne Stars paceman Brody Couch will join Finch and Stoinis at the Unicorns.
Australia’s multi-format players were not allowed to sign up for the tournament, given it clashes with the Ashes series in England.
Other notable international players to commit to the MLC include South African quick Anrich Nortje (Freedom) and former Proteas captain Quinton de Kock (Orcas).
Sri Lankan allrounder Wanindu Hasaranga is joining the Cricket NSW-backed Freedom.
The 2023 season of the MLC will begin on July 13 and feature 19 matches played across 18 days. The final will be played on July 30.