Ollie Pope has switched to Welsh Hearth as the primary batch of gamers to characteristic in The Hundred subsequent yr had been revealed, with London Spirit choosing Zak Crawley forward of Rory Burns, who’s on his technique to Oval Invincibles.
The inaugural version of the 100-ball competitors was postponed by 12 months due to the coronavirus pandemic however the deferral doesn’t imply final yr’s offers mechanically switch to the summer season of 2021.
England final week updating who holds a males’s central contract had an affect as all eight groups are assured a minimum of one particular person who holds a Take a look at deal, and 6 of the eight franchises caught with their preliminary choice.
Nevertheless, Jonny Bairstow dropping off the England and Wales Cricket Board checklist of red-ball contracts left the Cardiff-based franchise needing a substitute for him – they usually have plumped for Pope.
The center-order batsman was initially signed by Southern Courageous finally yr’s televised draft.
“I’m extremely excited to be becoming a member of Welsh Hearth. The aspect had a extremely sturdy squad lined up and I’m positive they’ll be working onerous to retain a number of the star names and additional strengthen the aspect within the upcoming draft,” Pope stated.
“We’ve all skilled a yr none of us may have predicted however The Hundred guarantees to be a vastly thrilling competitors subsequent yr and I can’t wait to participate.”
The Lord’s-based London Spirit determined to maintain maintain of Crawley, who was added to the squad via final yr’s draft, so Burns is due to this fact heading throughout London to hitch Sam Curran at The Oval.
England opener Dom Sibley, who alongside Crawley and Pope had been handed a red-ball deal for the primary time of their careers final week, will hyperlink up with Chris Woakes at Birmingham Phoenix.
The announcement marks the beginning of a three-month window operating till the top of January by which the groups can retain their gamers from their authentic squad. One other draft shall be held in early 2021 for the remaining gamers.
The ladies’s competitors has an easier course of as gamers can roll over their offers on their present phrases or enter into market negotiations – and eight high-profile internationals have chosen the previous choice.
Heather Knight is conspicuous by her absence on the checklist – with West Indies opener Deandra Dottin the participant agreeing to be retained by London Spirit – though that’s no indicator of the England captain’s intentions.
Windies captain Stafanie Taylor is being stored by Southern Courageous, Birmingham have stored Amy Jones, Kate Cross stays with Manchester Originals and Lauren Winfield-Hill will stay with Northern Superchargers.
Fran Wilson has been retained with the Invincibles, Trent Rockets have held on to Nat Sciver and Katie George is staying at Welsh Hearth.
Retained gamers: Birmingham Phoenix – Amy Jones, Dom Sibley and Chris Woakes. London Spirit – Zak Crawley and Deandra Dottin. Manchester Originals – Jos Buttler and Kate Cross. Northern Superchargers – Ben Stokes and Lauren Winfield-Hill. Oval Invincibles – Rory Burns, Sam Curran and Fran Wilson. Southern Courageous – Jofra Archer and Stafanie Taylor. Trent Rockets – Joe Root and Nat Sciver. Welsh Hearth – Katie George and Ollie Pope.