Lord’s-based London Spirit chose Kieron Pollard as their number one men’s pick in The Hundred Draft, as they continue to shape their squad for the second year of the tournament.
Trinidadian Pollard, who has played over 100 T20 Internationals for the West Indies, is one of the world’s most exciting all-rounders and vastly experienced in the shorter formats.
Spirit followed up by selecting England international spinner Liam Dawson, who was part of the squad that won the 2019 ICC Men’s Cricket World Cup, and Australian international Riley Meredith, currently one of the quickest pacemen on the circuit.
The women’s side can look forward to welcoming two ICC Women’s World Cup Winners, with Australia’s Beth Mooney and Megan Schutt joining up only two days after defeating England in the final.
They will be joined by New Zealand all-rounder Amelia Kerr who was initially signed by Southern Brave before missing the first year of the competition due to the complications caused by the Covid pandemic.
Spirit also secured the signing of Western Storm captain Sophie Luff from Welsh Fire.
London Spirit picked up some exciting young talent in the draft, with Jordan Thompson joining from Northern Superchargers, and Daniel Bell-Drummond from Birmingham Phoenix. They also re-signed Chris Wood as a right-to-match option during the draft.
They join a men’s squad already boasting Australian superstar Glenn Maxwell, England men’s World Cup winning captain Eoin Morgan and fellow England internationals Zak Crawley, Dan Lawrence and Mark Wood.
Tickets for The Hundred are now on sale to anyone signed up at thehundred.com. Anyone who hasn’t yet signed up can still do so and get immediate priority access.
"We are really pleased with how the draft panned out"
Liam Dawson said: “It’s an honour but I was surprised to be one of the first picks in the draft for The Hundred this year. Leaving Southern Brave was a tough decision but ultimately, I didn’t see me playing a role there. I can’t wait to get going at Lord’s this summer in front of a packed house.”
Sophie Luff said: “I’m really excited to be joining London Spirit and linking up with Heather and the team. The Hundred was a fantastic competition last year but it’ll be really special to be playing at the Home of Cricket this summer and I’m looking forward to a new challenge.”
Fraser Stewart, London Spirit General Manager said: “We are really pleased with how the draft panned out. Kieron is clearly one of the top short format players in the world, whilst Liam also brings a wealth of experience. Riley is one of the fastest bowlers in the world at present and with Glenn Maxwell also joining us this year, we have three real box office overseas stars.
“To be welcoming two Australian star players in Beth Mooney and Megan Schutt is a real coup for the women’s side and along with Amelia Kerr, one of the brightest young all-rounders in the game, will see the team field some of the finest overseas players in the tournament.”
The Hundred proved a big hit with families and young people in particular relishing the mix of fast-paced cricket with music and family entertainment off the pitch which will only be bigger and better this year.
Lord’s will come alive with activities around the ground offering even more fun for all the family and a diverse range of great music acts through the continuing partnership with BBC Music Introducing. The second edition of The Hundred will also offer a new range of merchandise to get the family kitted out in full London Spirit colours.
London Spirit men’s side travel south of the river to take on local rivals Oval Invincibles at the Kia Oval in their opening game on Thursday 4 August. The opening men’s game at Lord’s on 8 August will see Spirit host Manchester Originals. The women’s side start their Lord’s campaign on Wednesday 24 August with Welsh Fire the visitors in an exciting double-header. Oval Invincibles visit for an all-London clash on Saturday 27 August before Birmingham Phoenix travel to Lord’s for the final group game on Tuesday 30 August.
London Spirit’s women’s side now has three places left to fill, while both men’s and women’s sides will choose a fourth overseas player through a Draft in June.