T20 Blast 2020 Without Overseas Players: Why Is It A Positive?

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T20 Blast Overseas Players Issue

We now know the Vitality T20 Blast will go ahead this summer. This, after much conjecture, the tournament will begin on August 27 and finish remarkably on October 3. Unlike previous years, this T20 Blast competition will be played without the usual influx of overseas players around the counties.

This means that counties and fans will be stripped of the chance to see some of the world’s best.

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CANTERBURY, ENGLAND – JULY 27: Rashid Khan of Sussex Sharks bowls during the Vitality Blast match between Kent Spitfires and Sussex Sharks at The Spitfire Ground on July 27, 2018 in Canterbury, England. (Photo by Sarah Ansell/Getty Images).

Domestic cricket’s summer showpiece is undoubtedly a better place with its international T20 stars gracing grounds up and down the country, often clearing them with ease. In recent seasons the Blast has seen the likes of Babar Azam, AB De Villiers, Rashid Khan, and multiple other stars play internal parts in their counties’ campaigns.

Therefore their lack of participation is a great loss and shame in many ways. However, the absence of the overseas stars could provide the opportunity for some of the country’s lesser-seen youngsters to shine on a stage whereby it may previously not have been possible. As what should hopefully be a one off-summer without overseas players, it mightn’t be the worst thing to ever happen.

Benefits Of The T20 Blast Lacking Overseas Players

English T20 has been a breeding ground for young English talent since it’s inception. As well as the obvious attraction of the format, it has undoubtedly given a platform for players to express their wide array of skills to a wider audience. In truth, the development in skill set has been one of the best things to come from the shortened format.

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This year will give fans, albeit from the comfort of their own living rooms, to see even more of the countries finest young prospects live and in competitive action. Many of whom have represented their county in other formats previously. Although, often not broadcast to a wider audience to the same level as the Blast.

NELSON, NEW ZEALAND – NOVEMBER 05: Pat Brown of England celebrates dismissing Martin Guptill of New Zealand during game three of the Twenty20 International series between New Zealand and England at Saxton Field on November 05, 2019 in Nelson, New Zealand. (Photo by Gareth Copley/Getty Images)

Often the arrival of overseas stars means two local youngsters make way when the T20 Blast competition comes around. Not this year. Despite the obvious advantages and increase in standard, the international stars bring to the completion, for one summer only allowing all the best county youngsters to appear in all formats might be a big boost to their development.

An English Surplus

Last year’s Blast saw the emergence of youngsters Tom Banton, Matt Parkinson, and Pat Brown amongst others. All of whom have gone on to earn England recognition in one shape or other. With a host of other young talent getting set to play in this year’s rescheduled tournament, who will be the names to make an impact in 2020?

England’s limited-overs squads are already very strong. Now that the T20 Blast doesn’t feature overseas players, English talent have more of a chance to break into those squads. It will not be easy though, as players such as Sam Billings and David Willey have found out recently.

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