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MLC – Rashid Khan, Heinrich Klaasen, Nicholas Pooran, Trent Boult, Haris Rauf among overseas players retained

A number of the world’s leading short-form cricketers will stay in North America after June’s T20 World Cup, with Rashid Khan, Trent Boult, Heinrich Klaasen and Haris Rauf among the players retained by their franchises for the second edition of Major League Cricket (MLC) in July.

The season will start on July 4, Independence Day in the USA and five days after the T20 World Cup final in Barbados, with a significant number of players expected to feature in both tournaments. Justin Geale, MLC’s tournament director, had said late last year, “We expect to see even more world-class players taking part in season two.”

Franchises will now approach players on the open market after announcing their initial retentions, with a maximum of nine overseas players permitted in each squad and up to six permitted in a single playing XI. Domestic retentions are due to be confirmed by the end of the month, with a local player draft to follow in March.

MLC’s fixture list has not been confirmed publicly but ESPNcricinfo understands that the final has been provisionally scheduled for July 28. The league is due to overlap with the end of the group stages of England’s T20 Blast, as well as the first week of the Hundred.

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