Former Hyderabad wicketkeeper Ibrahim Khaleel will take over as USA captain from Steven Taylor for the Auty Cup beginning on Tuesday in Toronto. Khaleel, 34, made his debut for USA in May earlier this year at the ICC WCL Division Three in Uganda.
ESPNcricinfo reported on Sunday that Taylor has been left out altogether as one of six changes in the squad from Division Three in an effort “to change team culture and reward players who show commitment to want to play for USA”, according to a team source. CPL-contracted players Timroy Allen and Akeem Dodson have also been dropped along with Alex Amsterdam, who was the team’s leading scorer during the title-winning run in Los Angeles at WCL Division Four last year.
USA squad: Ibrahim Khaleel (capt & wk), Camilus Alexander, Elmore Hutchinson, Nosthush Kenjige, Ali Khan, Prashanth Nair, Japen Patel, Mrunal Patel, Nisarg Patel, Sagar Patel, Timil Patel, Roy Silva, Abdullah Syed, Ravi Timbawala
Canada squad: Nitish Kumar (capt), Bhavindu Adhihetty, Shahid Ahmadzai, Rizwan Cheema, Navneet Dhaliwal, Satsimranjit Dhindsa, Nikhil Dutta, Dilon Heyliger, Usman Limbada, Mark Montfort, Dhanuka Pathirana, Cecil Pervez, Varun Sehdev, Srimantha Wijeyratne (wk), Saad Bin Zafar
Allen withdrew from the Jamaica Tallawahs squad last month due to a family emergency. His availability for the Auty Cup was in doubt but it is understood that the USA selectors decided to drop him. The other two players left out are batsman Nicholas Standford and medium pacer Jessy Singh, who had reconstructive knee surgery last month. Fahad Babar, who missed Division Three after suffering a gash in his left hand on the eve of the tournament, is also absent after breaking a bone in his left wrist in a club cricket match in Chicago that will require surgery this week.
Three players who were a part of USA’s winning squad at Division Four, but were dropped for Division Three – Ravi Timbawala, Abdullah Syed and Prashanth Nair – have been recalled while Nisarg Patel and Roy Silva are in line to make their official USA debuts. Both Nisarg and Silva were a part of USA’s squad that played a pair of exhibition matches against Jamaica Tallawahs and St Kitts & Nevis Patriots in Florida last month. The other recalled player is allrounder Japen Patel, who also played in the exhibition matches. Patel last played an official match for USA in the 2015 World T20 Qualifier in Ireland.
Canada also announced a 16-man squad for the Auty Cup led by captain Nitish Kumar. Jimmy Hansra, Junaid Siddiqui and Durand Soraine have been left out after being part of the squad at Division Three in Uganda. Two notable recalls are Srimantha Wijeyratne and Usman Limbada.
Wicketkeeper Hamza Tariq, who scored 18 in Trinbago Knight Riders’ win over Patriots in Saturday’s CPL final, has withdrawn from the Auty Cup squad after sustaining a shoulder injury in that match.
The Auty Cup will be contested over three one-day matches at Maple Leaf Cricket Club in King City, beginning on September 12. Canada currently holds the trophy after beating USA 2-1 last October in Los Angeles.