Sri Lanka is all set to host the Red Bull Campus Cricket World Finals, a global Twenty20 college cricket tournament, starting from Sunday.
Marathwada Mitra Mandal College of Commerce (MMCC), Pune, the defending champions retained the title of Red Bull Campus Cricket India this year and will represent India at the World Finals, which will conclude on September 16.
Teams from Sri Lanka, Australia, Bangladesh, Zimbabwe, India, Pakistan, South Africa and the United Arab Emirates earned qualification and will line up in Colombo for the group stages from September 10-12.
The action will then move to Galle International Stadium for the semi-finals and final with last year’s champions, Sri Lanka’s Business Management School, aiming to retain the title.
Tournament director Brendon Kuruppu said: “There’s nothing quite like a high-intensity tournament to test the mettle of developing cricketers, and that’s exactly what the Campus Cricket World Final is.”
“You learn and improve from playing against the best. This tournament is a wonderful opportunity for players to pick each other’s brains and share their own knowledge on the game, while also showing the world what they’ve got,” he added.
The likes of Sri Lankan cricketer Niroshan Dickwella and Indian opener Lokesh Rahul both emerged through previous editions of the T20 tournament, while Delhi Daredevils and Gujarat Lions drafted Shashank Singh and UAE-based Chirag Suri in this year’s Indian Premier League’s (IPL) Auction, respectively.
Commenting on the tournament, Lokesh Rahul said: “Red Bull Campus Cricket gives young cricketers a stage to express themselves, and provides a fair idea of the profession as they go higher up.”
“I did not have any other tournament (after an injury when he was 18). I was looking for a platform to perform and I played well and then I got to play for Karnataka in Ranji and T20. A lot of good things happened to me after Red Bull Campus Cricket,” he added.