Birmingham Phoenix have resigned South Africa spinner Imran Tahir and added India all-rounder Deepti Sharma following the conclusion of The Hundred Overseas Draft.
Picking sixth in both men’s and women’s rounds, the Phoenix men secured their number one choice with Tahir returning for a second successive season.
The 43-year-old was one of the biggest stories in the inaugural season of The Hundred, when he took a hat-trick against Welsh Fire on his home ground at Edgbaston, before celebrating with a lap round the ground.
Tahir, who has been ranked the number one ODI and T20I bowler, finished with ten wickets and best figures of five for 25.
Sharma returns to The Hundred for a second time having represented London Spirit Women in last year’s tournament. The 24-year-old impressed taking ten wickets, whilst holding the second lowest economy rate at 5.26.
The right-arm bowler and left-arm bat – who has 498 runs and 60 wickets in international T20 cricket for India joins a star-studded Phoenix side that will include New Zealand Captain Sophie Devine, Australian all-rounder Ellyse Perry and England wicket-keeper Amy Jones.
Birmingham Phoenix General Manager Craig Flindall said: “We’re delighted to add two international stars to our men’s and women’s Phoenix teams. The unpredictability of a draft keeps each team guessing, but we’re thrilled to add our top two targets.
“Imran made a significant impact in last year’s tournament, with his hat-trick becoming one of the most recognisable cricketing moments of the summer, whilst his energy, passion, and personality not only ignited his teammates, but our Edgbaston crowd.
“Deepti also brings a wealth of international experience with bat and ball and her performances for London Spirit were incredibly impressive.
“Deepti has tested herself against the biggest names in cricket and I’m really looking forward to seeing her in a Birmingham Phoenix jersey.”
Birmingham Phoenix have also moved to secure right-arm fast bowler Tom Helm to replace of Matt Fisher, who sustained a back injury whilst playing for England this winter.
Helm (28) returns to the Birmingham Phoenix after taking five wickets in seven matches during last season’s campaign.
Flindall added: “Whilst we’re naturally disappointed to lose Matt Fisher, we’re very pleased to have resigned a talented pace bowler who we know well in Tom Helm”.
Fans can get their seats now to avoid missing out on the sport and entertainment event of the summer with early bird tickets now on sale at www.thehundred.com until 20 June.
The Hundred offers an affordable day out for the family, with U16 tickets priced at £5 and free for children aged five and under, and there are family-friendly stands in every ground.
Fans are advised to buy soon so as not to miss out – tickets have already been selling fast after last year’s buyers were given first chance to get their seats for this year.
Ticket-buyers can also look forward to:
- More activities around the ground to keep the whole family entertained.
- A diverse range of great music acts through our continuing partnership with BBC Music Introducing.
- Enhanced food and drink offerings to cater for everyone inside the grounds.
- A bigger range and more availability of merchandise this year so you can get kitted out in your team colours.
Tickets on sale now for The Hundred
The Hundred is an unforgettable experience, bringing world-class sporting action and excitement to Edgbaston this summer. Fans can now purchase tickets online for all four match days at Edgbaston.
Under 16s are only £5.