Jacques Kallis SA20
Kallis has the pedigree as a former player and an experienced T20 coach.

Watching the expressions of the young players when in the presence of Jacques Kallis at the SA20 launch held recently at the Wanderers in Johannesburg, it is clear the legendary Proteas all-rounder is still held in high esteem.

It is this presence that Kallis will bring to his new role as assistant coach to Graham Ford at the Pretoria Capitals for the inaugural SA20 season.

Kallis has the pedigree as a former player and an experienced T20 coach who has spent time in the Indian Premier League in various roles.

The 47-year-old has seen first-hand the influence a successful T20 League can have on the national team’s fortunes, especially in terms of growing the depth of players available.

“I think South African cricket has been crying out for this for a long time. I think we’ve seen the wonderful job it has (franchise league cricket) done around the world in terms of how the local competition has improved cricket. I have no doubt it will be the same here, and everyone is looking forward to it. The standard will be very high,” Kallis said.

“Having international players and coaches will also certainly provide a good product. It is going to improve the young guys coming through.”

The exposure SA20 will provide young players is also unrivaled in South African cricket, with all 33 matches being televised live on SuperSport in Sub-Saharan Africa, but crucially it will also be broadcasted to the passionate cricket audience in India on Viacom18 Sports.

“With everything being televised, it’s a great opportunity for the guys to put their name out there, whether for international cricket or other leagues worldwide. What better stage for these young guys to put their hand up in this competition?” Kallis enthused.

South African sport is renowned for its fiercely-contested derbies, and SA20 will add to that tradition when MI Cape Town and neighbors Paarl Royals kickstart the tournament at Newlands on Tuesday, January 10.

The opening game will be followed by Durban’s Super Giants hosting the Joburg Super Kings at Kingsmead on Wednesday, January 11, before Kallis’ Capitals travel to Gqeberha on Thursday, January 12, to face the Sunrisers Eastern Cape at St George’s Park.

“The good thing about all these games is that they are like derbies. And when you look at the teams on paper, they are of equal strength, and that bodes well for the competition because any team can beat another,” Kallis said.

All ticket specials are subject to availability at all six stadiums.

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