The Pakistan Junior League (PJL), which will be contested at the Gaddafi Stadium in Lahore from October 1 to 15, has recruited Shahid Afridi, Daren Sammy, Javed Miandad, and Shoaib Malik to serve as mentors.
Ramiz Raja, the chairman of the PCB, created the Pakistan Junior League in an effort to capitalize on the business market’s interest in spending money on cricket. The six franchises will be auctioned through a bidding procedure, and although they won’t be identical to those used in the Pakistan Super League, the team names will be based on significant centers in the nation (PSL).
The PCB wants to select players in the 15–19 age range via a draft method that includes both domestic and foreign players. The PCB has mandated that PSL clubs include two aspiring cricketers in their squads, one of whom must play in the starting XI, despite the fact that these age-group players have never participated in a competition of this magnitude.
The majority of Pakistan’s junior cricket has been organized, with numerous levels between the Under-15 and Under-19 age groups. In the past, two- or three-day contests in addition to one-day matches have been used to develop young talent.
The PCB has developed the strategy of hiring hall-of-Famers of the game as mentors and coaches to increase the league’s financial viability and appeal. The four well-known individuals will act as event ambassadors in addition to their responsibilities as team mentors, leveraging their connections and influence to spread the word about the league.
Despite ending his career in international cricket in 2018, Afridi, the former Pakistani captain, remains one of the most well-liked individuals in the nation. He talked about his inclusion in the league as he said.
“Working as a mentor of a side comprising teenagers will be a new experience for me. I am thoroughly excited and looking forward to playing my part in helping these energetic and skillful cricketers achieve the zenith of glory. I have no doubts with the abundance of talent we have, this tournament will be able to identify, at least, half a dozen cricketers who can be nurtured and developed into star cricketers, who can then go on to shoulder the expectations and hopes of millions of cricket fans and followers.”
This looks like a great proposal from Pakistan Cricket Board to develop young players for the future. Since the league is not mandated to limited-overs, it will give exposure to young lads at a much-needed stage of their cricket journey. They will have a better foundation and learn about international cricket culture.