Faf du Plessis is all set to make his Pakistan Super League (PSL) debut while Bangladesh stars Tamim Iqbal and Mahmudullah are among the 21 foreign players to confirm their participation for the remainder of the T20 tournament.
Du Plessis, whose Indian Premier League stint with Chennai Super Kings ended this week after his team failed to reach the playoffs, will be joining 2017 PSL champions Peshawar Zalmi.
The former South Africa skipper will be replacing Kieron Pollard since the latter will be engaged in the New Zealand tour captaining West Indies' T20I side.
“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," Du Plessis said.
The other signing made by Zalmi is Hardus Viljoen in place of the absent Liam Dawson whereas Tom Banton and Lewis Gregory will also be unavailable for the playoffs.
Lahore Qalandars will be missing out on the services of centurion Chris Lynn with Tamim Iqbal drafted in the opening slot. Tamim has PSL experience under his belt, having previously represented Zalmi. He will now be boosting Qalandars' bid for a maiden title.
“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," he said.
Table-toppers Multan Sultans have added Mahmudullah and England's Adam Lyth in the line-up to replace the outgoing overseas duo of Moeen Ali and Fabian Allen.
“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," stated Mahmudullah, who has been a part of the eliminated Quetta Gladiators in the past.
Karachi Kings have beefed up their batting resources with all-rounder Sherfane Rutherford in the mix for Chris Jordan as the latter will be busy in England's tour of South Africa.
The complexion of the 21 foreign recruits for the playoffs reads as seven South African players, six England cricketers, four West Indies individuals, two Bangladesh stars and one each from Australia and New Zealand.
The fifth edition of the PSL was suspended on March 17, just after the conclusion of the round-robin stage, due to Covid-19.
Pakistan's marquee T20 event will recommence with the Qualifier between Multan Sultans and home side Karachi Kings on November 14.
All matches will be held behind-closed-doors in Karachi with the final scheduled to take place on November 17.
Karachi Kings: Aamer 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, Waqas Maqsood
Lahore Qalandars: 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), Usman Shinwari
Multan Sultans: 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, Zeeshan Ashraf
Peshawar Zalmi: 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, Yasir Shah