Delray Rawlins excited about The Hundred tournament
Delray Rawlins, the Sussex and Bermuda all-rounder, is excited about the opportunities that The Hundred tournament will give English county cricketers such as himself this summer.
Rawlins, who was drafted by Southern Brave for the inaugural 100-balls-a-side competition, which begins its delayed first season in July, shared his thoughts with his local newspaper, the Chichester Observer, ahead of the start of the 2021 English county season.
“The first one is exciting, not just for me, but for all the cricketers around and coaches,” the 23-year-old told the Observer.
“Everyone is looking forward to it because franchise tournaments are the big thing around the world at the moment. It’s another chance to put your name in the pool of players playing franchise cricket.
“You’ve got coaches from overseas as well as players. If you do well against other teams, it will go a long way.”
Rawlins, who made his Sussex debut in 2017, will be joined in the Brave squad by four Sussex team-mates — Jofra Archer, Chris Jordan, George Garton and Tymal Mills — as well as former Sussex spinner Danny Briggs.
Two other players in the Brave squad from the South of England are Hampshire’s James Vince and Liam Dawson.
Does Rawlins see that as an advantage? “Yes, most definitely,” he replied. “Everyone knows each other well, which makes the training and game situations a bit easier. You know how people work and how they perform.
“Adding the overseas player to that group of players will only benefit the squad.”
Australia pair David Warner and Marcus Stoinis bring international flavour to the team, joining the player regarded as the world’s most destructive T20 cricketer, Andre Russell, in the Brave team.
“There’s some top international players in the side,” Rawlins said. “It’s important for myself that I learn from players like Andre Russell and David Warner.
“It’s going to be good fun, but there is a lot of learning to be done as well.”
Eight newly formed teams spread across Britain will make up the league, including Welsh Fire (Cardiff), Northern Superchargers (Leeds), London Spirit, Trent Rockets (Nottingham), Oval Invincibles (London), Manchester Originals and Birmingham Phoenix, will compete along with the Brave to become the tournament’s first winners.
New features such as five-ball and ten-ball overs will need to be worked out by coaches, analysts and players.
“I think the team that can adapt to the new format the best will come out on top,” Rawlins said. “We have to be adaptable and take it as it comes. I don’t see it being too different from T20.
“We see the T10 in Abu Dhabi and I think everyone that has played that has adapted pretty well.”
The tournament runs from July 21 to August 21, with the men’s and women’s finals at Lord’s.
Southern Brave, coached by Sri Lanka legend Mahela Jayawardena, start their campaign against Trent Rockets in Nottingham on July 24.
The Brave will play their home matches at the Ageas Bowl in Southampton.