Kieron Pollard of Mumbai Indians hits a boundary.
Kieron Pollard, a much sought after player in franchise cricket, has been roped in by London Spirit for The Hundred 2022. Image Credit: Sportzpics for BCCI

London: London Spirit have signed West Indies batsman Kieron Pollard as their number one men’s pick in The Hundred draft, the team said on Tuesday, while all-rounder Andre Russell joined Manchester Originals and Dwayne Bravo went to Northern Superchargers.

Pollard, who has played over 100 Twenty20 Internationals, was recruited by the London side along with England spinner Liam Dawson and Australian fast bowler Riley Meredith. Australia allrounder Glenn Maxwell was already in their squad.

“I’m really pleased I’ll get to play at Lord’s. I have some good memories of playing there, and have done well in finals for Hampshire there,” Dawson said.

“Glenn Maxwell and Pollard are legends of the game, so I think we’ve got a fantastic team together.”

Manchester Originals, who finished sixth last season, signed West Indian Russell, Sri Lankan leg-spinner Wanindu Hasaranga and Australian fast bowler Sean Abbott.

Welsh Fire bolstered their squad by bringing in Australia spinner Adam Zampa, South African big-hitter David Miller and Pakistan fast bowler Naseem Shah as their overseas players.

West Indian Bravo will be joined at the Northern Superchargers by Pakistan paceman Wahab Riaz.

However, the likes of Chris Gayle, David Warner, Aaron Finch and Babar Azam were not signed.

The Hundred was launched to attract a younger audience to the game in England with eight city-based teams competing over five weeks. Matches comprise 100 balls per innings with a change of ends after 10 deliveries.

Southern Brave won the inaugural competition last year, comfortably beating Birmingham Phoenix in the men’s final at Lord’s after the Oval Invincibles won the women’s crown.

The men’s champions kept faith with South Africa’s Quinton de Kock, making him their first pick.

“I can’t wait to come back and play for Southern Brave this summer and hopefully defend our title,” De Kock said. “Being part of the side last year was special and it was amazing to see the Ageas Bowl packed full with kids having an amazing time.”

The 2022 tournament will be held between August 3 and September 3.