Cricket fans are eagerly waiting for the first season of the UAE T20 league, which is due to start in the first month of 2023. The six teams will compete in Dubai, Abu Dhabi, and Sharjah to get the first trophy of this brand-new tournament.
The Gulf Giants team will also be in the title hunt and will rely on their selected squad to get to the glory. GG have roped in several T20 superstars from multiple countries for the tournament. Here, you will find out about the strengths and weaknesses of their squad, along with their chances to make it happen for themselves.
So, let’s dive right into this article.
Gulf Giants Team Owner
The Gulf Giants franchise is under the ownership of a sports company named Adani Sportsline. The company has also previously bought several other sports teams in India.
Gulf Giants Squad Breakdown
Batsmen: Chris Lynn, James Vince, Tom Banton, Wayne Madsen, Ollie Pope, and Shimron Hetmyer
All-rounders: David Wiese, Liam Dawson, and Dominic Drakes
Bowlers: Chris Jordan, Richard Gleeson, Jamie Overton, Qais Ahmed, and Rehan Ahmed
GG Likely Starting XI
Gulf Giants have plenty of T20 stars on their side, maybe too many of them. That’s why choosing a playing XI will be a headache for them. Despite that, we have formulated their best XI, and here it is:
- Chris Lynn
- Tom Banton
- James Vince
- Shimron Hetmyer
- Local 1
- Liam Dawson
- David Wiese
- Chris Jorda
- Richard Gleeson
- Qais Ahmed
- Local 2
The two possible deviations from this predicted team could be the inclusion of Jamie Overton and Rehan Ahmed in place of Richard Gleeson and Qais Ahmed. However, these two changes are not too likely to happen.
Gulf Giants Squad Strengths
Solid Batting Lineup
The Giants’ top order will be the key to their success in the competition. Lynn and Banton at the top can bash the bowling with ease and make them lose control. Chris Lynn strikes in excess of 144 and Tom Banton in excess of 146. So, keeping them quiet early is a tough nut to crack.
The openers will be followed by James Vince at the crease. Vince can not only hit the ball hard but can also adjust his game according to the game’s situations and conditions. He is the perfect dynamic #3 T20 batter that a team needs in its lineup. Next up is Shimron Hetmyer, who is known for his power-hitting. He can take the attack to both spin and pace while using his power.
In the slog overs, GG will rely on Wiese and Dawson. Wiese is one of the most entrusted finishers in this format. His strike rate of 144.5 and average of 24.5 in T20 cricket suggest that he is one of the players to keep an eye on during the ILT20. Liam Dawson has a stupendous strike rate of 158 in T20Is. Although he is not as well-known as Wiese, he can still be equally effective.
Variety in Pace Bowling
Gulf Giants have trusted only English bowlers to give a spine to their pace bowling lineup. Jamie Overton, Chris Jordan, and Richard Gleeson will be responsible for that. These three guys are quite different from each other in the aspect of bowling tactics and their role during the 20 overs.
Jamie Overton will be their go-to choice with the new ball. His ability to get the ball to deviate off the seam can make it hard for the opposition’s top order. He can later come in during the middle phase to challenge batters with a few bumpers. His height certainly aids his bowling style.
Chris Jordan is totally different from his fellow English pacer. Jordan is more of a death overs bowler whose yorkers are his prime strength. He is certain to bowl two of his four overs at the death. But that’s not it about Jordan’s bowling. He is the quickest pacer in the Gulf Giants squad and can even hit 150 clicks. So, his extra pace can be effective in the middle overs.
Richard Gleeson is quite new to International cricket, but the T20 format is not something new to him. The 34-year-old has bagged 86 scalps in his 75 T20 games. Gleeson is more of a hit the deck hard pacer. He usually bowls one during the powerplay, then two in the middle, and one at the death.
Summing up, the Giants’ pace attack has decent variety and they can be rotated during the whole 20 overs without much thinking to do.
Gulf Giants Squad Weaknesses
Inexperienced Spin Attack
Liam Dawson will lead Gulf Giants’ spin attack in the UAE T20 league. He has experience but is more of a bowler whose job is to contain the opposition rather than take wickets. Also, he generally bowls only during the first half of the innings and is not known for getting an appreciable amount of spin.
GG have two wrist spinners in the form of Qais Ahmed and Rehan Ahmed. Both of them don’t have sufficient experience at this level. Gulf Giants are likely to pick only one of them in their playing XI. Irrespective of who plays and who sits out, batters might target him due to the limited amount of experience under their belt. One bad over can put these young leggies under an enormous amount of pressure.
GG ILT20 Performance Prediction
The Gulf Giants will go into the competition with a well-balanced squad. Unlike most of the other teams in the UAE T20 league, GG have a strong and dynamic pace attack. They are likely to get through the playoffs and put up some fine performances during their campaign.
However, their spin department looks fragile, and that’s why they are not favorites to play in the finals. Hence, our prediction for them is to make it to the final 4 cuts but not any further.