Australian star Glenn Maxwell will use the T20 Strike series in Darwin next month to help press his World Cup claims and begin his step towards coaching by helping mentor a young Melbourne Stars outfit at the Top End tournament.
Maxwell joins experienced Australian fast bowler Nathan Coulter-Nile in a quality Stars outfit while spinner Cameron Boyce is another T20 international who will headline the Renegades side during the tournament, that features six teams with the best young talent in cricket.
Kayo is your ticket to the best local and international sport streaming Live & On-Demand. New to Kayo? Try 14-days free now >
WATCH LIVE: News Corp is streaming the T20 tournament from 15-27 August. For access, sign up here!
There had been concerns the Victorian BBL teams would be unable to attend the tournament due to Covid, but Stars coach Clint McKay confirmed the teams were locked in to play in Darwin as Melbourne emerged from their latest lockdown and restrictions.
Maxwell’s inclusion ahead of the T20 World Cup in October, plus Coulter-Nile’s decision to play ahead of the IPL, shows the type of quality that will be on display in a tournament that will be exclusively live streamed on News Corp websites from August 15.
“Glenn Maxwell is going to come as well as a bit of a leader and on-field coaching sort of role for the younger players coming through,” McKay said.
“They can gain great experience having one of the world’s best ever Twenty20 players to actually showcase his skills but also to help develop these young guys who have the opportunity coming through.
“I think he needs to get out and play some cricket at this time of year instead of hitting balls at the indoor centre in Melbourne all the time.
“It’s also important for the Stars program … they will learn out there in the middle batting with one of the world’s best Twenty20 players.”
The T20 Strike series will feature six teams playing 17 games in 13 days in Darwin, with some of Australia’s best young talent getting the chance to further press their claims for domestic BBL contracts.
McKay said the tournament would be a stepping stone for many younger players who were getting their chance out of club cricket in Victoria to prove themselves in the Stars development system.
“That is what this whole thing is about, if you see the way we’re setting up and the players we’ve selected it’s a couple of young guys who are on contract and still trying to find their way in Twenty20 cricket but also too some guys off-contract like a Jon Merlo or James Seymour who we see actually replacing some of the guys in our squad over the next couple of years with the ageing list,” he said.
“Our whole Academy is an eye to the future and to make sure they continue to develop we do need these guys to come into our squad to play in the Big Bash to be exposed to similar level and similar situations they will be expected to play come the big time.”