Canada’s first Twenty20 league in North America a success

Canada’s Saad Bin Zafar was the star of the final match last year, scored an unbeaten 79 runs and grabbed two wickets. Pictures by Mahesh Abeyewardene

Vancouver Knights’s victory at Global T20 Canada championship match capped off a successful inaugural edition of the six-team league and provided glimpses of the potential of the first Twenty20 league to be fully staged in North America.
Played before a sellout festive crowd at Maple Leaf Cricket Club, the final, between Vancouver and Cricket West Indies B team, showcased the exciting Twenty20 form of cricket.

Aside from the players, many stakeholders in the Cricket Canada community contributed to making the league’s first edition a success, despite the short runway to launch. “Global T20 Canada is a Cinderella story,” said Cricket Canada president Ranjit Saini. “Operations staff, volunteers and suppliers went out of their way to deliver an outstanding event to viewers. The management, staff and volunteers of Maple Leaf Cricket Club delivered world-class pitches with very limited resources.”

Chris Gayle signs autographs for fans.


The strong Canadian performances came amid a star-studded field of talent – a major achievement for a new T20 league in an associate member country. Stars that participated included Smith, Chris Gayle, Daren Sammy, Lasith Malinga, Andre Russell and David Warner, among many others. Over 1,500 players from more than 40 countries expressed an interest in participating in the inaugural edition by registering for the Players Draft.

Cheerleader at the Global T20 final in King City.

Looking ahead, league organizer, Mercuri Canada Ltd., will aim to build on these achievements for future editions. Planning is already underway with decisions to come over the coming months on league dates, markets, venues and other logistics.