Nelson Mandela Bay executive mayor Athol Trollip believes the region will benefit greatly in many aspects when the T20 Global League kicks off in November.
Selected as one of the eight cities to host the franchises, Trollip said the Nelson Mandela Bay Stars would have a big role to play in promoting the city.
“The franchise is integral to our vision of ‘One city with one future’ as sport has always been such a strong unifying force in South Africa,” he said.
“I was very excited to hear about the T20 Global League and thrilled that we were chosen as a host city.”
The mayor said the competition would cater for sports-mad fans in the region, while also providing an economic boost.
“We will see great cricket, with a legendary team and great coaching staff,” he said. “This is the stuff of dreams and we would like everyone to get behind the Nelson Mandela Bay Stars.
“Sport and sports tourism are great economic drivers for our city and this will be a much-needed boon for Nelson Mandela Bay.”
The Nelson Mandela Bay Stars franchise includes international stars such as former England batsman Kevin Pietersen and top-ranked limited overs spinner Imran Tahir of South Africa.
Trollip said the metro were fully behind the franchise, having done all they could to ensure the team adopted the name of the late president.
“I have a good feeling after meeting Ajay and the vision he has for this team. Just look who he has assembled – there are some real legends in the squad.”