Uva Next v Yorkshire, CLT20 qualifier, Johannesburg October 8, 2012

Champions League debutants kickstart qualifiers


Match facts

October 9, 2012
Start time 1330 (1130 GMT)

How they qualified

Yorkshire finished runners-up in the Friends Life t20 in August, losing the final to Hampshire by ten runs in Cardiff. Uva Next beat Nagenahira Nagas in the rain-hit final of the inaugural SLPL in Colombo.

Big Picture

Two teams with contrasting histories take on each other at Wanderers to flag off the qualifying round of the Champions League. Yorkshire, one of the proudest English counties with a rich legacy, play a team that was conceived just a few months ago. Uva Next, the winners of cricket's newest Twenty20 league - the Sri Lanka Premier League - is the only qualifier from Sri Lanka. Both teams have just two games to make an impression and progress to the group stages. A depleted Trinidad and Tobago is the third team in their pool.

A common factor linking the two sides is that they will be making their Champions League debuts. For Yorkshire, their tournament experience may end after just two games, because England have decided to withdraw from the Champions League after this season, owing to scheduling clashes with their own domestic calendar. Led by Andrew Gale, Yorkshire have no superstars, their most experienced player being the former England left-arm seamer Ryan Sidebottom. Jonny Bairstow, who is establishing himself in England's limited-overs squads, had to withdraw due to a wrist injury. They had three training sessions at Headingley inlate September and warmed-up with a 23-run win over Sialkot Stallions on Sunday.

Uva, led by Thilina Kandamby, have their share of star players, including Jacob Oram, Umar Gul and Shivnarine Chanderpaul. They weren't the most powerful side in the round robin stage of the SLPL, winning three games, losing two and making the semi-finals as the fourth team. They defeated the top-placed Wayamba United in the semis thanks to an all-round performance by Oram. Sri Lankan sides have underperformed in previous editions. Now thanks to a franchise-based system which allows them to field foreign players, Uva has a chance to improve the country's standing in this tournament. They warmed up with a six-wicket win over Hampshire on Sunday.

Players to watch

Uva's Dilshan Munaweera was the pick of the local players in the SLPL. The attacking right-hand opener was the highest run-getter in the tournament with 212 runs at a strike-rate of 144.21. His 44 in the final helped his side clinch the title. He was one of the new faces in Sri Lanka's World Twenty20 squad, but didn't get more than two games.

David Miller, the South African middle-order batsman who has featured in his country's limited-overs squads, was Yorkshire's highest run-getter in the Friends Life t20 with 390 runs in 12 games at a strike-rate of 153.54. He was also the second highest run-scorer in the tournament. Yorkshire signed Miller as their Twenty20 overseas player in June.


"We've got clear game plans and the guys should all enjoy themselves. We've got absolutely nothing to lose from this tournament. No one is expecting a lot from Yorkshire. A lot of teams have got their stars but we are a very strong team and we believe that we can take anyone on."
Yorkshire coach Jason Gillespie.

Kanishkaa Balachandran is a senior sub-editor at ESPNcricinfo

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • Yohan on October 9, 2012, 10:57 GMT

    Come on UVA . go hard at yorkshire and win comprehencively . then wait see wht happens in others game and plan for third . go n be table toppers here . you can .

  • suranga on October 9, 2012, 6:08 GMT

    As a sri lankan i'll hope uva will win this match and make their mark strongly. I have a stronge feeling upul tharanga will be the key player for uva united. Also we can't forget jacob oram, chanderpaul and dilshan munaweera who are willing to score.

  • ashok on October 9, 2012, 5:12 GMT

    who will keep today 1.THARANGA 2.DE-ZOYSA? anyone can predict UVA NEXT XI?

  • hemanthreddy on October 9, 2012, 4:57 GMT

    the favourites for clt20 qualifiers are hampshire ,auckland. the remaining teams are capable but not much capable than these two teams ,after these two teams there is chance for yorkshire because it contain players like gale a dangerous striker of the new ball,with him at the top they had advantage ,in middle order miller will take care. but iam sure today its 1)chanderpaul vs gale 2)mahmood vs nazir

  • Susantha on October 9, 2012, 4:06 GMT

    wish all the best for UVa. Hope good match between Uva & Yorkshire!

  • Dummy4 on October 9, 2012, 3:30 GMT

    my only hope is Dilshan Munaweera,he will be next Jayasooriya or Aravinda,sure,hope he will cement his place for Sri Lanka Sqaude after performing well in this champion league.good luck & all the best for Dilshan Munaweera & the Uwa Next.

  • John on October 8, 2012, 21:27 GMT

    I think Yorkshire will struggle with only one overseas player and without JB and TB. As I posted elsewhere , I see it as a very negative move re not allowing Tim to play if he's not injured as it's not like he's played a massive amount of cricket and I'd say that unless a player is injured or in serious danger of burnout he should be encouraged to play in such matches to help him get used to conditions. Hopefully gus like Root and Rafiq will gain some great experience and make a mark. As a Somerset fan I'm envious that we're not there but I hope Yorks and Hants both do well out there

  • Yohan on October 8, 2012, 19:53 GMT

    Good luck Uva next .Go and keep Sri lankan mark on CLT20

  • vigi on October 8, 2012, 18:08 GMT

    All the best Uva. You surely do have support from most Sri Lankans. We back you guys to give us pride!!! Hoping that you guys make it up for the World cup finals loss!!

  • Jay on October 8, 2012, 18:08 GMT

    I want the English counties to do well here. I mean.. they are professional in every literal way compared to most of the other clubs. There is real history behind the English sides. I am a personal admirer of Yorkshire given their record and significance in English cricket. They have some very nice bunch of players. But then again, in T20 it takes only a few individuals to win you games. That's why it's so exciting and unpredictable. We don't know who that person is gonna be. :D

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