By Sohail Ali
LAHORE, Nov 02 (APP): South Africa’s Faf du Plessis will make his HBL Pakistan Super League debut as he was one of the 21 foreign stars to confirm his participation in the remaining four matches of Pakistan’s marquee event, which will be played in Karachi on 14, 15 and 17 November.
Du Plessis has played 255 international matches for South Africa, including 47 T20Is and is ranked 31st in the ICC T20I Player Rankings for Batsmen.
Du Plessis last visited Pakistan in 2017 as the ICC World XI captain and will represent Peshawar Zalmi as a replacement player for Kieron Pollard, who will be in New Zealand with the West Indies side.
Besides du Plessis, Cameron Delport (Karachi Kings), Dane Vilas, David Wiese (both Lahore Qalandars), Rilee Rossouw, Imran Tahir (both Multan Sultans) and Hardus Viljoen (Peshawar Zalmi) are the other South Africa players who will be in action in the tournament that carries a total prize money of $1million.
Six England cricketers, led by Alex Hales and James Vince, have also shown their commitment to continue to feature in one of the most attractive and widely followed leagues.
Hales and Vince will be in Karachi Kings’ and Multan Sultan’s colours respectively, while the other four England players are Samit Patel (Lahore Qalandars), Adam Lyth, Ravi Bopara (both Multan Sultans) and Liam Livingstone (Peshawar Zalmi).
Off the four West Indies players, two – Chadwick Walton and Sherfane Rutherford – will appear for Karachi, while two – Carlos Brathwaite and Daren Sammy – will represent Peshawar Zalmi. Rutherford will replace Chris Jordon, who will be in South Africa with the England side.
Bangladesh will be represented in the HBL PSL 2020 by Tamim Iqbal (Lahore Qalandars) and Mahmudullah (Multan Sultans), while Ben Dunk, who was one of the stars in the initial stages of the HBL PSL this year, will be aiming to help Lahore Qalandars win their first title in five attempts.
HBL PSL 2020 was the first event to be held entirely in Pakistan since its inception in 2016. The fifth edition commenced in Karachi on 20 February, but was suspended on 17 March.
Apart from Karachi and Rawalpindi, Lahore and Multan were the two other venues to host 30 of the 34 matches as nearly half a million spectators crossed turnstiles to witness live action.
Faf du Plessis said on Monday “I am very excited to join Peshawar Zalmi for the playoff stage games of HBL PSL 2020. I have fond memories of playing in Pakistan when I toured with the ICC World XI in 2017 and I am sure this experience, although different due to Covid-19, will be a memorable one as well.”
Mahmudullah said , “It’s an honour to play in the HBL PSL. Cricket is being played very differently this year and I hope to play a part in bringing smiles to the faces of our fans.”
Tamim Iqbal said : “I can’t wait to be back at the HBL PSL. Lahore Qalandars have had an amazing journey and I want to help our team win the trophy this year.”
Karachi Kings (5 foreign players) – Aamir Yamin, Alex Hales (England), Arshad Iqbal, Awais Zia, Babar Azam, Cameron Delport (South Africa), Chadwick Walton (West Indies), Iftikhar Ahmed, Imad Wasim, Mitchel McClenaghan (New Zealand), Mohammad Amir, Mohammad Rizwan, Sharjeel Khan, Sherfane Rutherford (West Indies), Umaid Asif, Umer Khan,Usama Mir and Waqas Maqsood
Lahore Qalandars (5 foreign players) – Abid Ali, Agha Salman, Ben Dunk (Australia), Dane Vilas (South Africa), David Wiese (South Africa), Dilbar Hussain, Fakhar Zaman, Farzan Raja, Haris Rauf, Jaahid Ali, Maaz Khan, Mohammad Faizan, Mohammad Hafeez, Samit Patel (England), Shaheen Shah Afridi, Sohail Akhtar, Tamim Iqbal (Bangladesh) and Usman Shinwari
Multan Sultans (6 foreign players) – Adam Lyth (England), Ali Shafiq, Bilawal Bhatti, Imran Tahir (South Africa), James Vince (England), Junaid Khan, Khushdil Shah, Mahmudullah (Bangladesh), Mohammad Ilyas, Mohammad Irfan, Ravi Bopara (England), Rilee Rossouw (South Africa), Rohail Nazir, Shaan Masood, Shahid Afridi, Sohail Tanvir, Usman Qadir and Zeeshan Ashraf
Peshawar Zalmi (5 foreign players) – Aamir Ali, Adil Amin, Carlos Brathwaite (West Indies), Daren Sammy (West Indies), Faf du Plessis (South Africa), Haider Ali Khan, Hardus Viljoen (South Africa), Hasan Ali, Imam-ul-Haq, Kamran Akmal, Khurram Shehzad, Liam Livingstone (England), Mohammad Mohsin, Rahat Ali, Shoaib Malik, Umar Amin, Wahab Riaz and Yasir Shah
Karachi Kings – Sherfane Rutherford comes in for Chris Jordan; Waqas Maqsood comes in for Ali Khan
Lahore Qalandars – Tamim comes in for Chris Lynn, Abid Ali replaces Salman Butt and Agha Salman takes over from Seekkuge Prasanna.
Multan Sultans – Mahmudullah comes in for Moeen Ali; Adam Lyth replaced Fabian Allen
Peshawar Zalmi – Faf du Plessis replaces Kieron Pollard; Hardus Viljoen joins in place of Liam Dawson; Yasir Shah will continue, replacing Lewis Gregory; Khurram Shahzad joins the side in place of Amir Khan.