The highly-decorated Australian all-rounder Shane Watson will coach the San Francisco Unicorns in the inaugural Major League Cricket season.
Watson, who most recently served as assistant coach of the Indian Premier League’s (IPL) Delhi Capitals franchise, is widely regarded as one of the most successful all-rounders in international cricket history.
The 41-year-old’s career highlights include three Cricket World Cup wins, a 150-week streak as the world’s No.1 all-rounder in T20 Internationals (T20I), and two IPL Player of the Season accolades.
Watson regularly captained the Australia national cricket side during his trophy-laden two-decade career and has played Major League Cricket’s T20 format in the IPL, Australia’s Big Bash League, and the Pakistan Super League (PSL).
“I’m thrilled to be coaching in the first-ever Major League Cricket season, which will bring a high standard of T20 cricket to the United States,” said Watson. “Our roster is strong, and we benefit from invaluable support from Cricket Victoria. I can’t wait for the first ball.”
Watson, who was appointed President of the Australian Cricketers' Association in 2019, will take control of a team with three International players on the roster, including AustralianT20I world champions Matthew Wade, Aaron Finch, and Marcus Stoinis. The domestic roster, which was populated at Major League Cricket’s historic Inaugural Draft event at Space Center Houston 2023, features 2019 Cricket World Cup champion Liam Plunkett and highly accomplished United States National Cricket Team all-rounder Corey Anderson.
“We’re very excited to bring a coach of Shane’s caliber to our team ahead of the inaugural season,” said San Francisco Unicorns co-owner Anand Rajaraman. “Shane is a proven leader, a champion, and a legend of the sport. His successes as a player will be critical to our fortunes in 2023 and beyond.”
Major League Cricket’s historic inaugural season will begin on July 13, 2023, at the league’s newly-constructed venue, Grand Prairie Stadium, in Grand Prairie, TX.
“Leadership is a vital ingredient for success in any startup, so we are delighted to bring in a coach with such a strong track record for our inaugural,” said San Francisco co-owner Venky Harinarayan. “With Shane Watson at the helm and one of the strongest rosters in the league, we have high hopes for our inaugural season and for our mission to popularize cricket in the United States.”
The San Francisco Unicorns will be joined by five other teams from major U.S. metropolitan areas – representing Dallas, Los Angeles, Washington D.C., Seattle, and New York City – who will each feature world-renowned cricket stars on their respective rosters alongside the best talent based in the United States, playing the fast-paced and exciting T20 format of the game.
In partnership with MLC, the Unicorns are planning to build a world-class stadium in the Bay Area, which will seat up to 15,000 people and be capable of hosting major international cricket events.
Click here to download the San Francisco Unicorns 2023 Media Kit.
About The San Francisco Unicorns
The San Francisco Unicorns launched in 2023 as one of six founding members of Major League Cricket (MLC), a ground-breaking T20 competition bringing some of world cricket’s biggest names to the USA for the first time in July 2023. Players on the inaugural roster include Australian T20 International champions Aaron Finch and Marcus Stoinis and 2019 Cricket World Cup champion Liam Plunkett. Cricket Victoria, the governing body for the sport in the Australian state of Victoria, will serve as the Unicorns’ high-performance partner.
The Unicorns, in partnership with MLC, plan to build a world-class home for the team in the Bay Area, which will seat up to 15,000 people and will be capable of hosting major international cricket events. The team’s primary investors are Silicon Valley entrepreneurs Anand Rajaraman and Venky Harinarayan, who are founding partners of data-driven venture firm rocketship.vc, and who previously founded US-focused database technology provider Junglee, which sold to Amazon in 1998 for $250m.