By Raza Hydery
The third edition of the Pakistan Super League (PSL) is around the corners and the cricketing fans and superstars are raring to go.
Star cricketers from many nations have been selected by the six franchises and there will be plenty of action for the fans to enjoy throughout the tournament.
Let’s take a look at the squad of each franchise taking part in the tournament this time around.
- Captain: Misbah-ul-Haq
- Head Coach: Dean Jones
- Bowling Coach: Waqar Younis
- Spin bowling coach: Saeed Ajmal
The winners of the first edition will be entering with all guns blazing in order to add another PSL title to their tally. With “Captain Cool” Misbah-ul-Haq as its skipper, the team is a blend of fresh and experienced cricketers.
Players to look out for: Misbah-ul-Haq, Shadab Khan, Rumman Raees, Rohail Nazir, Faheem Ashraf, Alex Hales, J.P. Duminy, Andre Russell, Samuel Badree, David Willey, Sam Billings, and Luke Ronchi.
- Captain: Darren Sammy
- Head Coach: Mohammad Akram
- Batting Coach: Younis Khan
- Spin Coach: Saqlain Mushtaq
The defenders of the 2017 edition of PSL will be heading to the tournament to win the trophy for the second time in a row. The side has experienced campaigners in all the three departments of the game.
Players to look out for: Mohammad Hafeez, Kamran Akmal, Hasan Ali, Wahab Riaz, Haris Sohail, Evin Lewis, Shakib Al Hasan, Andre Fletcher, Chris Jordan and Dwayne Bravo.
- Captain: Sarfraz Ahmed
- Batting Coach and Mentor: Sir Vivian Richards
- Head Coach: Moin Khan
- Assistant Coach: Abdul Razzaq
Leading Pakistan to victory in the ICC Champions Trophy 2017 and a Twenty20 series win over New Zealand on their back yard, Sarfraz Ahmed will be looking foward in leading Quetta Gladiators to their first ever PSL win.
Players to look out for: Sarfraz Ahmed, Asad Shafiq, Mohammad Nawaz, Anwar Ali, Kevin Pietersen, Jason Roy, Carlos Brathwaite, Shane Watson, Mahmudullah, Jofra Archer and John Hastings.
- Captain: Imad Wasim
- President: Shahid Afridi
- Head Coach: Mickey Arthur
- Assistant Coach: Azhar Mahmood
With a new captain and power-hitting all-rounder Shahid Afridi serving as the team’s President, Karachi Kings will be playing to add their name to the list of PSL champions. It is pertinent to mention that the struggles to qualify in the play-off stages. Therefore, it is necessary that the team learns from the past and experiments with its batting and bowling.
Players to look out for: Imad Wasim, Shahid Afridi, Babar Azam, Mohammad Amir, Usman Shinwari, Usama Mir, Colin Munro and Ravi Bopara.
- Captain: Brendon McCullum
- Head Coach: Aqib Javed
- Batting Consultant: Inzamam-ul-Haq
- Bowling Coach: Shoaib Akhtar
Finishing at the bottom in every season of the tournament, Lahore Qalandars – led by one of the most prolific cricketers of all time Brendon McCullum – will be playing to turn their fortunes around and win the tournament for the first time.
Players to look out for: Brendon McCullum, Fakhar Zaman, Yasir Shah, Shaheen Shah Afridi, Sohail Khan, Umar Akmal, Imran Khan, Aamer Yamin, Mitchell McClenaghan, Angelo Mathews, Chris Lynn and Sunil Narine.
- Captain: Shoaib Malik
- Head Coach: Tom Moody
- Batting Coach: Mohammad Wasim
- Bowling Coach: Wasim Akram
The new-comers in the tournament are led by a veteran management with the likes of Shoaib Malik – who led Pakistan to the first ever ICC World Twenty20 in 2007 – serving as captain and Wasim Akram – who was the mentor of Islamabad United, when the franchise won the first edition back in 2016. With a power pact lineup, let’s see what the team has to offer in their first ever campaign.
Players to look out for: Shoaib Malik, Ahmed Shehzad, Shan Masood, Sohail Tanvir, Umar Gul, Junaid Khan, Kumar Sangakkara, Kieron Pollard and Imran Tahir.
Story first published: 19th February 2018