WORCESTERSHIRE’S England all-rounder Moeen Ali has been revealed as the skipper of the Birmingham Phoenix franchise for the first season of The Hundred.
The World Cup winner grew up just a short distance from Edgbaston, which will host the men’s Birmingham Phoenix home matches, and remains a much-loved member of the local community.
Moeen will lead a star-studded team which includes World Cup-winning local lad Chris Woakes as well as up-and-coming England bowler and Rapids team-mate Pat Brown and New Zealand captain Kane Williamson.
“Every time that I come to Edgbaston it takes me back to some great first memories of coming here at a very young age,” Moeen said.
“I grew up in this area and to be the first-ever men’s captain of Birmingham Phoenix in a new competition which will reach out to communities and welcome them in is very special for me.
“We’re a tight-knit city in Birmingham. We have so much around us that brings the people together, no matter who you are or your background.
“I know how much of a uniting game cricket is and as a leader of the Birmingham Phoenix that is something I definitely want to promote.
“We are lucky to have some of the best players in the country in our squad but also some amazing overseas players, so we know that the cricket is going to be really exciting.”
Moeen has an excellent record as a captain having led Worcestershire Rapids to the past two Vitality Blast finals at Edgbaston, including their victory in 2018.
Moeen added: “Worcestershire is where I have developed as a player and as a leader and captaining them in high-profile games like at Finals Day will shape the way I will lead the Birmingham Phoenix.
“It will also help I’ve got Pat too because he is one of the best young white-ball bowlers in the country and when you add players like Chris Woakes, we have a strong local flavour I’m sure can bring home the title.”
Head coach Andrew McDonald said: “Moeen is a fantastic all-rounder and has the experience and temperament to lead the team.
“He started his cricket journey here at Edgbaston from a young age so it feels fitting that he will captain the men’s Birmingham Phoenix team.
“He’s involved in the local community in Birmingham and I know how much of a popular figure he is at Worcestershire too so I’m sure his efforts on and off the field will help inspire the next generation from our region and beyond to get involved in cricket.”