The Super Smash, which also goes by the name Burger King Super Smash, is New Zealand’s answer to the big domestic Twenty20 cricket leagues current sweeping the globe.
It may not be as popular as the Twenty20 leagues found in India, Pakistan and Australia, but it’s still has its fair share of top players and great games.
The New Zealand Super Smash has been held every year since 2005. That may not sound like much, but it means that it is older than many more popular Twenty20 leagues. In that time it has gone through several name changes, some of which are down to a change in structure, while others are all down to the sponsorship, as discussed a little later on.
From the season beginning in 2008 right on through to the season ending in 2014, the winner of the Super Smash was granted access to the prestigious Champions League Twenty20 to take place in the same year that they won the Super Smash title.
There are just six teams in the Super Smash. They begin with a double round robin format, followed by 2 preliminary finals and then the final itself. This format allows for a more open season and gives everyone a chance right until the end. But it still tends to go the way of the team who performed the best through the season and there have been a couple of dominant teams in the history of the Super Smash.
Each team in the Super Smash is allowed a maximum of 2 international imports. This is fewer than several other top leagues and helps to keep many local players in the league, where they can grow and become stars for the New Zealand cricket team. Or, as the case may be, where they can get noticed and then be shipped off to play in India, England or Australia
The winner of the very first season of the Super Smash was the Canterbury Wizards, who won by 6 wickets against Auckland Aces in the final. The Aces made up for their close call in the second season when they beat the Otago Volts to win the second ever Super Smash season.
Between 2006 and 2017, they would go on to win the Super Smash title several more times and are one of the most successful teams in the competition. Their best years arguably came between the years of 2010 and 2012, when they won two titles and claimed 1 runner-up place in just 3 seasons.
The Aces are generally there or thereabouts come the end of the season, although in recent years they have been bettered by teams like the Wellington Firebirds, who claimed the 2014/2015 title and then did the same in 2016/2017.
The main sponsor of he Super Smash typical comes before the name of the competition. In 2017 and 2018 this was Burger King, which is why it was commonly known as the Burger King Super Smash. Prior to this it has been known as the McDonald’s Super Smash and Georgie Pie Super Smash.
There aren’t many TV channels that show games from he Super Smash, but if you are in New Zealand then you can watch through Sky Sport (not to be confused with Sky Sports in the United Kingdom). You should also be able to find live steaming matches online, as well as live matches on some sporting channels in Australia and basically anywhere cricket is popular.