Recently Sharjah Warrior announced its UAE-based players in the squad. The four names include Junaid Siddique, Alishan Sharafu, Jawad Ullah, and Karthik Meiyappan. All franchises are required to include 4 UAE-based players in their squads.
Sharjah Warriors has reserved the four slots for the well-known leg spinner Karthik Meiyappan, under-19 captain Alishan Sharafu, and pacers Jawad Ullah and Junaid Siddique. That means the complete squad of the Sharjah Warriors franchise has picked an excellent balance with these four selections.
UAE Local Player Meiyappan Hopes to Bring the Trophy Home
Meiyappan has come forward to express his joy regarding his selection. The 22-year leg spinner stated,
“It is a matter of pride for me to represent Sharjah and be part of a star-studded team. Hope we can bring the trophy home by getting off to a great start. And for the four of us, there can’t be a bigger stage than this, especially one set for us in our own home.”
Karthik Meiyappan is best known for his performance in the ICC Men’s T20 World Cup in Australia. The bowler became the fifth player to take a hat-trick against Sri Lanka. He has also played with the Sharjah Warriors captain for the inaugural season, Moeen Ali. Meiyappan said,
“I just can’t wait to team up with him (Moeen Ali) again. There is an enormous amount of buzz about the ILT20 already, and I am sure it will only grow in stature with each passing year.”
Alishan Sharafu has led the UAE under-19 squad. He also expressed his feelings on inclusion in Sharjah Warriors,
“This is just the start. It is the perfect opportunity to show our talent on a global stage. Just being there around the best players of the world who play in the top leagues will give us a huge boost as players. Hopefully, we can do the best we can.”
The 19-year-old batsman has played with Sharjah Warriors coach Paul Farbrace in the T10 League. He was part of the Abu Dhabi team, where he broke the record of a century in only 25 balls. Sharafu is the first batsman to score 146 runs in 42 balls at the age of 17.
Junaid Siddique is a lesser-known right-arm fast-medium bowler. He has played in the T10 league as well. However, he did mention the significance and difference between those tournaments and the ILT20. Siddique also spoke highly of Sharjah Warriors, saying the franchise treats its players like family. He stated,
“With ILT20, the UAE players like us have an enormous opportunity to not just learn from the top guys and groom ourselves but also earn substantially while opening the doors for us to play in other leagues outside on the back of strong performances.”
Last but not least, Jawad Ullah is a fresh face, making his debut in the much-awaited ILT20. The 23-old pacer spoke to the media,
“I am lucky to be part of such a great team. Inshallah, the ILT20 league will allow all of us to shine. It is an exciting moment for our careers, and hopefully, I can deliver the goods.”
Jawad is a left-arm fast bowler who used to work as an electrical assistant. He comes from Al Ain and is currently under a contract with UAE Cricket Board.
The ECB General Secretary, Mubashir Usmani, felt ‘delighted’ at this inclusion of home players. The committee has readied the list of all 24 UAE-based players signed to be part of different franchises in IL20 2023. Usmani shared his remarks,
“We are delighted that, alongside several capped players, the performance and development teams identified several budding uncapped players from an exceptionally deep pool on offer.”
With the inclusion of players like Meiyappan and Sharafu in Sharjah warriors, fans are thrilled to see what other franchises have to offer. These new four additions to Sharjah Warriors will surely uplift the team’s collaborative performance.