Washington [US], November 16 (ANI): Major League Cricket (MLC) announced that the first-ever match of the inaugural season of the league will take place on July 13, 2023 in Texas.
"Major League Cricket (MLC) announced today the dates for its inaugural season in the summer of 2023, a transformative competition that will bring many of the world's top cricketers to the United States for the first time," said a statement issued by the league on Tuesday.
The league's historic opening match will take place on July 13, 2023, at the newly-constructed Major League Cricket venue, Grand Prairie Stadium, in Grand Prairie, Texas. The 2023 season will feature 19 matches to be played over 18 days, building up to the first-ever MLC championship final to take place on July 30, 2023.
Six teams from major metropolitan areas - representing Dallas, San Francisco, Los Angeles, Washington D.C., Seattle and New York City - will each boast multiple global stars on their rosters alongside the best talent based in the United States, playing the explosive Twenty20 (T20) format of the game.
"Next summer, the eyes of world cricket will be on the launch of Major League Cricket, with the stars of the game competing over three weeks of fast-paced T20 action," said Justin Geale, MLC Tournament Director. "The launch of MLC will transform American cricket and provide one of the best platforms in the sport for the world's most elite players to showcase their skills while also fast-tracking the development of domestic talent to feature in the league."
A special ceremony at Grand Prairie Stadium on Tuesday marked the installation of the 7,200-capacity venue's playing pitch, with construction set to be complete in spring 2023. Grand Prairie Stadium, located in the heart of the Dallas-Fort Worth metroplex, will be the competition's primary venue for the 2023 season and the home venue for Dallas' MLC team. More details on the Dallas franchise - including its team name and identity - will be unveiled in early 2023.
"Grand Prairie Stadium will be the best cricket venue in the United States upon its completion," said Ron Jensen, Mayor of Grand Prairie. "This venue will be a huge asset to the Grand Prairie community, bringing Major League Cricket, international cricket and potentially the 2024 ICC T20 Men's World Cup to Grand Prairie allowing fans here to experience a world-class sport in action."
MLC's investor group, featuring some of America's most successful and respected business leaders, includes Dallas-based investors Ross Perot Jr. and Anurag Jain.
"Major League Cricket's arrival in the summer of 2023 will bring professional cricket to the United States for the first time here in the Dallas area," added Anurag Jain. "We are proud that Dallas will have its own team for Texas to root for in Major League Cricket, playing at a world-class cricket venue that will also serve the passionate local cricket community."
Grand Prairie Stadium, the former home of the Texas AirHogs, is being converted to a cricket-specific facility at a cost of $20 million with an addition of seats around the oval increasing permanent capacity to 7,200. The venue will feature 1,000 club and premium seats, with the ability to expand to a capacity of over 15,000 for major events. It is expected to host matches at the ICC Men's T20 World Cup in 2024, set to be co-hosted by the United States and the West Indies.
Team names, additional venues and further details on Major League Cricket's inaugural season will be announced in early 2023. (ANI)