New Delhi: Veterans Yuvraj Singh, Harbhajan Singh and Ashish Nehra would like to get some quality match time before the T20 series in Australia, as the National Twenty20 championship for Syed Mushtaq Ali Trophy kicks off today across four different cities.

Harbhajan Singh, Ashish Nehra and Yuvraj Singh
Harbhajan Singh, Ashish Nehra and Yuvraj Singh

The tournament will serve the dual purpose for cricketers vying for top honours. For India internationals like comeback men Yuvraj and Nehra, along with fringe players, it will be a testing ground where they can stake claim for a berth in the team for ICC World T20 in March.

For those plying their trade in domestic cricket, Mushtaq Ali T20 trophy will give them a platform to impress the various franchises with their skills before the big IPL auction in February. The BCCI, in a positive step, has decided to hold Mushtaq Ali T20 keeping the World T20 in mind. The tournament over years had lost significance for being conducted hastily just before Indian Premier League. With auctions over, the domestic talents did not get an opportunity to land IPL contracts.

Punjab skipper Harbhajan and Yuvraj will be fighting it out against Rajasthan at Kochi while Nehra, who made a comeback into the Indian team after four and half years, will be getting himself battle ready with Delhi taking on Railways.

After being selected in the Indian T20 team, he would certainly like some match simulation before boarding the flight to Australia.