A quick guide to the Mzansi Super League squads

Thabang Moroe (CEO) of Cricket South Africa with the coaches of the MSL teams during the Mzanzi Super League player draft at Walter Sisulu Square on September 03, 2019 in Johannesburg, South Africa. (Photo by Sydney Seshibedi/Gallo Images)

Consolidation and renewal are mixed as various franchises press the reset button … sort of.

The Mzansi Super League on Tuesday held the second draft of its fledgling existence as South Africa’s premier T20 tournament.

While all of the six franchises retained a significant number of players, there was a distinct sense that some of them pushed the proverbial reset button following iffy inaugural campaigns.

That was particularly the case with the Tshwane Spartans and to a lesser extent the Durban Heat.

Here’s a quick verdict on how the teams recruited.


Chris Gayle during the Mzansi Super League match between Durban Heat and Jozi Stars at Sahara Stadium Kingsmead on December 07, 2018 in Durban, South Africa. (Photo by Anesh Debiky/Gallo Images)

2018 position: Winners

Coach: Donovan Miller

Squad: Kagiso Rabada (Proteas marquee), Chris Gayle (West Indies, International marquee), Rassie van der Dussen (r), Reeza Hendricks (r), Daniel Christian (Australia, r), Temba Bavuma, Duanne Olivier (r), Simon Harmer, Ryan Rickelton (r), Aaron Phangiso, Lizaad Williams, Sinethemba Qeshile (r), Nono Pongolo, Eathan Bosch, Delano Potgieter.

Strength: A power-packed, experienced batting line-up is supplemented with the acquisition of the canny Temba Bavuma, who will certainly provide class and versatility. They’ll be banking on Aussie all-rounder Dan Christian to fire again.

Weakness: Duanne Olivier will need to fire again as the kingpin of the attack, because might not quite have the support he desires.


Dale Steyn of Cape Town Blitz during the Mzansi Super League match between Cape Town Blitz and Paarl Rocks at PPC Newlands on December 07, 2018 in Cape Town, South Africa. (Photo by Carl Fourie/Gallo Images)

2018 position: Runners-up

Coach: Ashwell Prince

Squad: Quinton de Kock (Proteas marquee), Wahab Riaz (Pakistan, International marquee), Liam Livingstone (England), Dale Steyn (r), Sisanda Magala, Anrich Nortje (r), Asif Ali (Pakistan, r), Mohammad Nawaz (Pakistan), Janneman Malan (r), George Linde, David Bedingham, Vernon Philander, Marques Ackerman, Gregory Mahlokoana, Aviwe Mgijima.

Strength: They’ve cushioned two injury-prone quicks in Dale Steyn and Anrich Nortje with the eye-catching signing of Pakistan’s Wahab Riaz together with the wiles of Vernon Philander.

Weakness: Too much of the batting relies on Quinton de Kock’s star power and the promising Janneman Malan can’t afford to experience the dreaded second-season syndrome.


James Vince of Hampshire plays a shot as Chris Cooke of Glamorgan during the Vitality Blast match between Glamorgan and Hampshire at Sophia Gardens on August 30, 2019 in Cardiff, Wales. (Photo by Harry Trump/Getty Images)

2018 position: 3rd

Coach: Adi Birrell

Squad: Faf du Plessis (Proteas marquee), Isuru Udana (Sri Lanka, International marquee), JP Duminy, Tabraiz Shamsi (r), Hardus Viljoen, Aiden Markram (r), Bjorn Fortuin (r), James Vince (England), Dwaine Pretorius, Cameron Delport (r), Sibonelo Makhanya, Henry Davids (r), Mangaliso Mosehle (r), Ferisco Adams, Kerwin Mungroo.

Strengths: An envious band of stroke-makers who’ll make a lot of runs if they all fire. Englishman James Vince is a classy addition.

Weaknesses: The attack lacks star-power, even if Hardus Viljoen seems a shrewd buy.


Imran Tahir of the Nelson Mandela Bay Giants during the Mzansi Super League match between Nelson Mandela Bay Giants and Paarl Rocks at St Georges Park on November 30, 2018 in Port Elizabeth, South Africa. (Photo by Michael Sheehan/Gallo Images)

2018 position: 4th

Coach: Eric Simons

Squad: Imran Tahir (Proteas marquee), Jason Roy (England, International marquee), Chris Morris (r), Jon-Jon Smuts (r), Junior Dala (r), Farhaan Behardien, Beuran Hendricks, Matthew Breetzke, Onke Nyaku, Ben Dunk (Australia), Heino Kuhn (r), Marco Marais (r), Grant Thomson, Akhona Mnyaka, Nandre Burger.

Strength: A well-balanced group on paper, combining a versatile and skilled batting line-up with a nice battery of seamers.

Weakness: This team lacks a second, quality frontline spinner.


Tom Curran of Surrey celebrates after a wicket appeal during the Vitality T20 Blast match between Middlesex and Surrey at Lord’s Cricket Ground on August 08, 2019 in London, England. (Photo by Alex Pantling/Getty Images)

2018 position: 5th

Coach: Mark Boucher

Squad: AB de Villiers (Proteas marquee), Tom Curran (England, International marquee), Morne Morkel, Lungi Ngidi (r), Heinrich Klaasen, Theunis de Bruyn (r), Roelof van der Merwe, Lutho Sipamla (r), Pite van Biljon, Tony de Zorzi (r), Waqar Salamkheil (Afghanistan), Dean Elgar, Wiaan Mulder, Vaughn van Jaarsveld, Corbin Bosch.

Strengths: The Titans spine of the squad means a spirit of excellence will flow through the players. Tom Curran adds great balance as a bowling all-rounder.

Weakness: Too much of their bowling strategy once again relies on Lungi Ngidi. What if he’s injured again?


Gary Kirsten during the Mzanzi Super League player draft at Walter Sisulu Square on September 03, 2019 in Johannesburg, South Africa. (Photo by Sydney Seshibedi/Gallo Images)

2018 position: 6th

Coach: Gary Kirsten

Squad: Andile Phehlukwayo (Proteas marquee), Alex Hales (England, International marquee), David Miller (r), Dane Vilas, Ravi Bopara (England), Keshav Maharaj (r), Kyle Abbott (r), Khaya Zondo (r), Marco Jansen, Daryn Dupavillon, Sarel Erwee (r), Malusi Siboto, Prenelan Subrayen, Wihan Lubbe, Shaun von Berg.

Strengths: Kirsten’s mentoring is obviously priceless, while Kingsmead could easily prepare some spicy turners for a very accomplished group of spinners.

Weakness: A fragile middle- and lower order that might lack some punch.

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