The Abu Dhabi franchise will be group’s fourth T20 franchise
The Knight Riders Group, led by Shah Rukh Khan, has acquired the rights to own and operate the Abu Dhabi franchise of the UAE’s T20 League.
The investment by the Group, which is led by actor Shah Rukh Khan, along with Juhi Chawla and her husband Jay Mehta, will establish their fourth T20 franchise in the UAE’s T20 league — after those in the IPL, CPL and MLC. The Group will now set up the Abu Dhabi Knight Riders
In a statement, Chairman of the UAE’s T20 League, Khalid Al Zarooni, said: “The commitment to grow the T20 format and the expertise gathered by the Knight Riders Group through their involvement in franchise cricket across the world, is undisputed. We are exceptionally pleased with their foresight to join forces with the UAE’s T20 League and firmly believe it will elevate the reputation, and professionalism of the League throughout the cricket community.
”For several years now, we have been expanding the Knight Riders brand globally and closely watching the potential for T20 cricket in the UAE. We are excited about becoming part of the UAE’s T20 League, which no doubt will become hugely successful,” said Khan.
After establishing the Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) in 2008 in the Indian Premier League (IPL), the Group became owners of the Trinbago Knight Riders (TKR) in the Caribbean Premier League (CPL) in 2015. Recently, the Group made a significant investment in Major League Cricket (MLC) in the US and also intends to set up a franchise in the greater Los Angeles area.
Mubashshir Usmani, General Secretary, Emirates Cricket Board, added that the UAE’s T20 League will attract some of the biggest names in world cricket, while also giving a platform and international exposure to local and upcoming players.
“As T20 cricket expands around the world, we are flattered by the regular invitations to play a major role in growing the sport across the world. We have had a keen interest in developments in the UAE and our expansion is consistent with our long-term strategy,” added Venky Mysore, CEO of KKR and Red Chillies Entertainment.