The Pakistan Cricket Board has released a list of players under several categories available for selection for the fourth edition of the Pakistan Super League.
The star studded list includes the likes of Chris Lynn, Kieron Pollard, Corey Anderson, Brendon McCullum, AB de Villiers, Rashid Khan and Steve Smith.
The franchises were allowed to retain a maximum of 10 players from their previous roster. In their final squad, they can have 3 players each under Platinum, Diamond and Gold categories but no more than 5 from the Silver category. They are also allowed to have 2 players from the Emerging category among their ranks.
Lahore Qalandars: AB de Villiers
The Sixth Team: Shahid Afridi / Steve Smith
Quetta Gladiators: Steve Smith / Shahid Afridi
Peshawar Zalmi: Corey Anderson
Lahore Qalandars: Mohammad Hafeez
The Sixth Team: Chris Lynn
Lahore Qalandars have the first pick in the Platinum category and will have no second thoughts regarding their first selection. The South Africa legend confirmed his availability for the Pakistan Super League earlier this year. However, media reports suggest the 34-year-old will only be featuring in matches taking place in the UAE. That may just be enough to take the Qalandars into the play-offs for the first time, though.
Shahid Afridi will be playing for his third franchise in four years after Karachi Kings decided against retaining the former Pakistan captain. He could be heading to The Sixth Team, formerly known as Multan Sultans. A swap between Shahid Afridi and Steve Smith is also on the cards.
Quetta Gladiators have an option to pick either a local player or an overseas one. Their current squad comprises of Sarfraz Ahmed and Sunil Narine in the Platinum category. In case of Shahid Afridi going to The Sixth Team, Quetta Gladiators could end up picking Steve Smith, who will be playing the competition for the first time as well.
Peshawar Zalmi have the option to pick an overseas player after retaining Wahab Riaz and Hasan Ali in the Platinum category. Corey Anderson confirmed his participation during the Pakistan vs New Zealand series. He remains an apt replacement for Mohammad Hafeez, who put his name down for the drafts after three fine seasons with the franchise. With Lahore Qalandars and Quetta Gladiators having their turns before Zalmi, it is highly unlikely that they would be getting any of Steve Smith or AB de Villiers.
Mohammad Hafeez parted ways with Peshawar Zalmi after three successive seasons. He remains up for selection in the Platinum category. With other franchises keep an eye for overseas players, Lahore Qalandars will not have better options than Mohammad Hafeez as captain. He will bring much-needed experience in the absence of Brendon McCullum.
Chris Lynn was bagged by Lahore Qalandars in last year's draft as their first pick, but was ruled out of the competition through injury. He has made himself available once again and could prove to be an asset for any franchise. However, he will only be available once the Big Bash League ends and his availability for the matches in Pakistan is still unconfirmed.
Thisara Perera could be an exciting prospect in that case. The Sri Lanka all-rounder has led his country in limited overs internationals and traveled to Pakistan with the World XI as well.
Defending champions Islamabad United will enter the draft without any picks in the Platinum category as they’ve already retained 3 players in that category. They have 1 each in Diamond and Silver, while 2 picks in Gold category, along with 2 in the Emerging category.
Retained: Luke Ronchi, Shadab Khan, Faheem Ashraf, Asif Ali, Mohammad Sami, Rumman Raees, Sahibzada Farhan, Waqas Maqsood, Zafar Gohar
Ambassador: Hussain Talat
Released: Misbah-ul-Haq, Andre Russell, Samuel Badree, JP Duminy, Sam Billings, Alex Hales, David Willey, Iftikhar Ahmed, Amad Butt, Mohammad Hasan, Mohammad Hasnain, Samit Patel, Rohail Nazir
Karachi Kings will go into the draft without any picks in Platinum and Diamond categories. They have 1 pick in Gold, 5 picks in Silver and 2 picks in the Emerging category.
Retained: Colin Munro, Ravi Bopara, Mohammad Amir, Babar Azam, Usman Khan, Imad Wasim, Mohammad Rizwan
Ambassador: Colin Ingram
Released: Shahid Afridi, Usama Mir, Khurram Manzoor, Mitchell Johnson, Luke Wright, David Wiese, Tabish Khan, Mohammad Irfan Junior, Hasan Mohsin, Eoin Morgan, Saifullah Bangash
Lahore Qalandars will start with 2 picks each in Platinum, Diamond and Emerging categories, while 1 each in Gold and Silver categories.
Retained: Anton Devcich, Fakhar Zaman, Yasir Shah, Rahat Al, Hasan Khan, Agha Salman, Sohail Akhtar
Ambassador: Shaheen Shah Afridi
Released: Brendon McCullum, Cameron Delport, Aamer Yamin, Bilawal Bhatti, Ghulam Mudassar. Angelo Mathews, Mitchell McClenaghan, Gulraiz Sadaf
Traded In: Hassan Khan and Rahat Ali
Traded Out: - Umar Akmal and Sunil Narine
Quetta Gladiators are without a pick in the Diamond category. They have 1 pick each in Platinum and Gold categories, 3 in Silver and 2 in the Emerging category.
Retained: Sarfraz Ahmed, Sunil Narine, Sohail Tanvir, Mohammad Nawaz, Umar Akmal, Anwar Ali, Saud Shakeel
Ambassador: Rilee Rossouw
Mentor: Shane Watson
Released: Mahmudullah, Umar Amin, Mir Hamza, Asad Shafiq, Brathwaite, Rameez Raja Junior, Saad Ali, Rashid Khan, Azam Khan, Kevin Pietersen, Chris Green, Kohler Cadmore, Ben Laughlin, Jason Roy, John Hastings, Carlos Brathwaite, Faraz Ahmad Khan
Traded in: Umar Akmal and Sunil Narine
Traded Out: Hassan Khan and Rahat Ali
Peshawar Zalmi have 1 pick in the Platinum category. After retaining Hasan Ali and Wahab Riaz, they cannot pick another local player of the same category in their squad. They have 1 pick in Diamond and Emerging categories, 2 in Gold, and 3 in the Silver category.
Retained: Darren Sammy, Liam Dawson, Wahab Riaz, Hasan Ali, Umaid Asif, Khalid Usman, Sameen Gul
Ambassador: Kamran Akmal
Released: Shakib Al Hasan, Mohammad Hafeez, Haris Sohail, Chris Jordan, Mohammad Asghar, Dwayne Bravo, Tamim Iqbal, Hammad Azam, Saad Nasim, Taimoor Sultan, Ibtisam Sheikh, Andre Fletcher, Evin Lewis, Mohammad Arif
The Sixth Team will start the draft with 2 options each in Platinum, Gold and Silver categories, with 1 pick each in the Diamond and Silver categories.
Retained: Shoaib Malik, Junaid Khan, Shan Masood, Mohammad Abbas, Mohammad Irfan Khan, Umar Siddiq, Mohammad Junaid
Ambassador: Mohammad Irfan
Released: Kieron Pollard, Kumar Sangakkara, Sohaib Maqsood, Kashif Bhatti, Nicholas Pooran, Abdullah Shafiq, Saif Badar, Hardus Viljoen, Umar Gul, Ross Whiteley
Traded in: Mohammad Junaid
Traded Out: Sohail Tanvir to Quetta Gladiators
Platinum Category (Foreign): AB de Villiers, Steven Smith, Chris Lynn, Brendon McCullum, Corey Anderson, Colin Munro, Luke Ronchi, Dwayne Bravo, Sunil Narine, Kieron Pollard, Imran Tahir, Mitchell McClenaghan, Thisara Perera, Rashid Khan and Colin Ingram
Gold Category (Local): Hussain Talat, Anwar Ali, Ehsan Adil, Mohammad Rizwan, Mohammad Asghar, Imran Khan Sr, Khurram Manzoor, Harris Sohail, Salman Butt, Mukhtar Ahmed, Umar Akmal, Azhar Ali, Zulfiqar Babar, Bilal Asif, Sami Aslam, Sohaib Maqsood, Sohail Khan, Imran Farhat, Umer Gul, Aamir Yamin, Fawad Alam, Shan Masood, Bilawal Bhatti, Imam Ul Haq, Asad Shafiq, Shaheen Afridi, Abdul Razzaq, Rahat Ali, Ahmad Shahzad, Umar Amin and Aizaz Cheema
Gold Category (Foreign): Michael Klinger, Harry Gurney, Marlon Samuels, Alzarri Joseph, Daniel Bell-Drummond, Morne Van Wyk, Sundar Raza, Liam Dawson, Mohammad Shahzad, Devendra Bishoo, Ollie Robinson, Olly Stone, John Hastings, Samit Patel, Sean Williams, Chadwick Walton, Phil Salt, Phil Mustard, Ben Laughlin, Anton Devcich, Steven Finn, Veerasammy Permaul, Jamie Porter, Andre Mccarthy, Jamie Overton, James Franklin, Kevin O’Brien, Obed Mccoy, Lewis Gregory, Niroshan Dickwella, Danny Briggs, Denesh Ramdin, Lakshan Sandakan, Andre Fletcher, Asghar Afghan, James Vince, Jack Brooks, Nicholas Pooran, Miguel Cummins, Krishmar Santokie, Marchant De Lange, Fawad Ahmed, Graeme Cremer, Jake Ball, Ronsford Beaton, Sandeep Lamichhane, Dawid Malan, Brendan Taylor, Dais Ahmad, Keemo Paul, Upul Tharanga, Cameron Delport, Ben Dunk, Sabbir Rahaman, Chris Green, Akila Dananjaya, Jordan Clark, Ali Khan, Ravi Bopara, Ariful Haole, Rizwan Cheema, Benny Howell,, Ryan Ten Doeschate, Oshane Thomas, Zakir Hassan, Tatenda Taibu, Matt Parkinson, David Wiese, Jerome Taylor, George Dockrell, Irfan Karim, Ross Whiteley, Hardus Viljoen, Khary Pierre, Sam Hain, Jade Dernbach, Wayne Madsen, Kyle Abbott, Shane Dowrich, Adam Lyth and Johnson Charles
Diamond Players (Local): Mohammad Sami, Rumman Raees, Asif Ali, Imad Wasim, Usman Shinwari, Sohail Tanvir, Junaid Khan, Mohammad Nawaz and Yasir Shah
Diamond Players (Foreign): Ian Bell, Mohammad Nabi, Craig Overton, Mujeeb Ur Rehman, Joe Denly, Solomon Mire, Daniel Christian, Paul Stirling, Lasith Malinga, Kemar Roach, Luke Wright, Tillakaratne Dilshan, Alex Hales, Wayne Parnell, Tymal Mills, Carlos Brathwaite, Darren Bravo, Lendl Simmons, Darren Sammy, Rovman Powell, Dwayne Smith, Shimron Hetmeyer, Samuel Badree, Sam Billings, Ben Cutting, Mark Wood, Rilee Rossouw and Tim Bresnan
Meanwhile, the Pakistan Cricket Board has terminated the contract of Multan Sultans after Schon Properties failed to meet financial obligations under the agreement.
Multan Sultans will now be named as ‘The Sixth Team’ during the PSL draft set for November 20 in Islamabad. The PCB will look for fresh bids for the team through a public tender process which will allow the new owner the option of electing the franchise name and city.
The Pakistan Super League is also set to introduce a mid-season trade window for this edition. The trade window will be activated after each team has played minimum of four matches and it will remain active for 72 hours. However, only those players who have not played any match in the tournament will be eligible for trading.
The fourth edition of the Pakistan Super League commences on February 14 in the UAE. The league will have up to eight matches staged across Lahore and Karachi, with the latter also hosting the final on March 17.