Miami– Top-order batter-cum-wicketkeeper Monank Patel will lead the United States side in the Men’s T20 World Cup Global Qualifier B, as they vie for one of the two final spots at Australia 2022.
USA, who on Wednesday named their squad for the Men’s T20 World Cup Global Qualifier B, also announced dates for a preparation tour in the build-up, playing two T20s against Namibia and Jersey in Windhoek, before warm-up matches against the Netherlands before their first Qualifier fixture on July 11.
After missing the recent Cricket World Cup League 2 tri-series with injury, six-hitting record-holder Jaskaran Malhotra returns to the squad, with young left-arm orthodox spinner Vatsal Vaghela also included. Spinning all-rounder Marty Kain earned a spot, while there was no room for Karima Gore or Ian Holland.
The Americans are pitted against hosts Zimbabwe, Singapore and Jersey in a tricky Group A, and must finish in the top two, and win a semifinal over an opponent in Group B to secure a place in this year’s global tournament. Hong Kong, the Netherlands, Papua New Guinea and Uganda make up the other group in the eight-team tournament.
USA Cricket Operations Director Richard Done stressed the importance of the tournament for the game in the country.
“The ICC T20 World Cup Qualifier in Zimbabwe is a genuine chance for our men’s national team to make history and qualify for a first Cricket World Cup. We have worked hard to put a very strong T20 preparation program in place with T20 games versus Namibia and Jersey in Windhoek before a pair of games versus Netherlands in Harare.
“We know how difficult this qualifier will be with eight high quality sides all battling to get on the plane to Australia, but we are hopeful of playing to the best of our abilities as a team.”
USA T20 World Cup Qualifier squad: Monank Patel (Captain), Aaron Jones, Ali Khan, Cameron Stevenson, Gajanand Singh, Jaskaran Malhotra, Marty Kain, Nisarg Patel, Rusty Theron, Saurabh Netravalkar, Steven Taylor, Sushant Modani, Yasir Mohammed, Vatsal Vaghela.
T20 World Cup Qualifier B (Group A):
USA vs Jersey, Bulawayo, July 11; USA vs Singapore, Bulawayo, July 12; USA vs Zimbabwe, Bulawayo, July 14; Semifinals/5-8th Place Play-off, Bulawayo, July 15; Final Classification Match, Bulawayo, July 17. (IANS)