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The Cricket Association of Bengal (CAB) recently announced the inaugural edition of Bengal T20 Challenge. The six-team tournament will be played at the Eden Gardens in a bio-secure environment in wake of the ongoing coronavirus pandemic. The T20 event is scheduled to launch from November 24 onwards and it will mark a return of the sport in Kolkata amidst lack of cricketing activities in the state.
A player’s draft for the Bengal T20 Challenge was conducted on Tuesday, November 17. During the event, CAB President Avishek Dalmiya confirmed that a majority of the 33 matches of the tournament will be played under the floodlights of Eden Gardens. He also added that all players, members of the coaching staff and match officials will remain in a bio-secure environment during the entirety of the Bengal T20 Challenge.
Indian cricketer Manoj Tiwary and fellow Bengal players Abhimanyu Easwaran and Shahbaz Ahmed are some of the big names associated with the Bengal T20 Challenge. Shreevats Goswami, who play for the Hyderabad IPL team, is also one of the star attractions. Each of the six participating teams, namely East Bengal Club, Mohun Bagan Club, Town Club, Kalighat Club, Tapan Memorial Club and Calcutta Customs Club have 15 players in their ranks.
CAB conveys it's thanks to the Anchor Trio who did a commendable job keeping the draft pick spirited with knowledgeable insights, meaningful anecdotes & spontaneity. A big applause to @DeepDasgupta7, @BoriaMajumdar & @joydeepfive.#CAB pic.twitter.com/59nu7XpOno— CABCricket (@CabCricket) November 17, 2020
Manoj Tiwary, who has represented the national side in 12 ODIs and three T20Is, is slated to lead the Mohun Bagan Club. Meanwhile, Shahbaz Ahmed (Tapan Memorial), MD. Kaif (Town), Subham Sarkar (Kalighat) and Shreyan Chakraborty (Calcutta Customs) are the four captains of the other competing teams. Abhimanyu Easwaran, who was supposed to lead the East Bengal team, tested COVID-19 positive recently and is expected to withdraw from the competition.
The opening round of the Bengal T20 Challenge will be a round-robin stage where each team will face each other twice. It will be followed by the semi-finals and a final and an entire schedule is expected to be revealed by CAB on Saturday, November 21.
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