Busy winter for Roelof

Although Somerset’s season has ended, the cricket continues for Roelof van der Merwe.

The popular all-rounder has just left for Sharjah in the UAE to play in the 2018 T10.

The tournament gets underway on November 23rd with two groups of four playing against each other in a round-robin basis before progressing into the semi finals and final which takes place on December 2nd.

Before he left Roelof said: “It’s an exciting tournament and there are multiple matches each day. There’s an unbelievable vibe about the games, the crowds love it and the matches are sold out every time. There are a lot of sixes and a lovely atmosphere at the games.

“This year it’s been expanded and there will be eight teams taking part with each team playing three matches per day. Each match lasts 90 minutes so it’s pretty quickfire stuff.

“I’ll be playing for the Maratha Arabians again and it was an unbelievable tournament last year.”

Roloef talked bit more about the format of the game.

“The power-plays are three overs, each bowler has two overs and there are a lot of runs in a short period of time.

“As a bowler you have just 12 balls to bowl. You basically go straight into a death phase with still 10 wickets to take, so it’s quite tough and the wickets are pretty good at Sharjah.

“It was interesting last year. The scores started off pretty low and then just shot through the roof up to 140 or 150. It will be interesting to see what the second edition of the tournament brings in terms of scores.

“T10 is basically like the last four overs of a T20 match for the whole game. Its pretty exciting stuff.”

What future does Roelof think that T10 has in world cricket?

“Obviously you want to make cricket an Olympic Sport and I think that the only way that is going to happen is with a shorter version, that’s the only way it will be possible.

“T10 is a step in the right direction to get to that level, but the ICC is going to have to support it to get to that level. You never know, one day there might even be a T10 league in England.”

Following his involvement in the T10 Roelof is playing in an ODI series for Holland against UAE and straight after that he hopes to be part of the new T20 competition that is being staged in Dubai, so he is likely to be away for a little while this winter!

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