St. Moritz Ice Cricket 2018: 5 Facts about the cricketing extravaganza

St. Moritz is a remote and picturesque village in Switzerland, which hosts a cricketing extravaganza every year, called ‘Cricket on Ice’. The concept of playing ice cricket is perhaps the most unique format in cricket. It is played on a frozen lake in St. Moritz, and the 2018 season, which is the 29th edition of the tournament, will witness former cricket stalwarts like – Virender Sehwag, Lasith Malinga, Shoaib Akhtar, and Shahid Afridi, among others – return to action.

The two teams that will play in the 29th edition of the St. Moritz Ice Cricket, are – Team Diamonds, who are led by Virender Sehwag, and Team Royals, led by Shahid Afridi. The matches will be held on 8th and 9th February, and here are 5 facts about the event:

1. What is St. Moritz Ice Cricket?

St. Moritz ice cricket was a finding of a bunch of passionate English cricketers, who played the game for the first time in 1988, and made the remote village of Switzerland, St. Moritz, the birthplace of exciting winter sports. St. Moritz has also been the iconic venue of two Winter Olympic Games, and many other exciting events.

Playing cricket in such an awkward setting is made possible as the lake freezes into a thick layer of ice, which makes the lake sustain more than 200 tons of weight.

2. Match Date and Telecast of the 29th edition of Ice Cricket

The two T20 format cricket matches will be played at the venue on February 8 and 9, 2018. The cricket match will begin at 4 PM (IST), and is expected to go on till 8 PM. Live streaming of the matches will be available on SonyLiv, Sony Six HD.

The cricket players involved in the event will use traditional cricketing gear, including the red-ball, but will wear sports shoes instead of regular spike shoes used for cricket. The weather is expected to be bright and sunny during the day, but the mercury can drop to as low as -20 degree Celsius at night.

3. Approved by International Cricket Council (ICC)

A Sports organisation named VJ Sports is behind the holding of the 29th edition of the Ice cricket event, and the owner Vijay Singh has confirmed that the event has the approval of the International Cricket Council (ICC).

4. How much will the cricket stalwarts earn for playing Ice Cricket?

It has been reported by Sportswallah, that the top players who are featuring in the St. Moritz tournament, will be earning somewhere between $40,000-50,000, while the other players will earn $20,000-30,000 for the two matches, taking place on Thursday and Friday (8 and 9 February).

5. Teams taking part in the St. Moritz Ice Cricket event

Former India captain and cricketing veteran Virender Sehwag will lead the Diamonds XI, while former Pakistan captain Shahid Afridi will lead Royals XI. Both the cricketers where once arch-rivals during their playing days for representative countries and will once again face-off each other on ice.

COMPLETE SQUADS FOR ICE CRICKET 2018

Diamonds squad – Virender Sehwag (c), Zaheer Khan, Mohd Kaif, Ajit Agarkar, Mahela Jayawardena, Lasith Malinga, TM Dilshan, Michael Hussey, Andrew Symonds, Joginder Sharma, Ramesh Powar, Rohan Jain (Switzerland)

Royals Squad – Shahid Afridi (c), Shoaib Akhtar, Abdul Razzaq, Jacques Kallis, Graeme Smith, Daniel Vettori, Nathan McCullum, Grant Elliot, Monty Panesar, Owais Shah, Matt Prior, Aidan Andrews (Switzerland)