PSL 4: Karachi Kings Preview
Last Season's Performance
When the PCB successfully sold the first five PSL franchises in 2015, the Karachi franchise was sold to the ARY Group's Salman Iqbal. It was the highest priced PSL team at that point (later overtaken by Multan Sultans) .
However, being the then most expensive team didn't translate to on-field success, as they won only 7 of their 19 fixtures in the first 2 seasons.
Last year Kings played 12 matches, out of which they won 5 and lost 7. Imad Wasim was announced to lead the side, and he did so in 8 games, out of which Kings won 4 and lost 3,the other finished in a No Result. Eoin Morgan led the team in 3 games due to Imad's absence, but Kings lost 2 of those fixtures.
Mohammad Amir also captained Kings in the eliminator game against Zalmi which Karachi lost.
Karachi have qualified for the knockout stage in all the previous editions and will now hope to progress further.
Prior to the PSL Draft, it was announced that Shahid Afridi would be leaving the franchise. He was subsequently released into the draft pool.
It was also announced that legendary former fast bowler and ex-national captain Wasim Akram would join the franchise as the President. Akram had been mentor and coach to Islamabad United in the first 2 seasons and was Team Director for Multan Sultans in Season 3.
Ahead of the 2019 season, Karachi Kings unveiled a new playing kit and a team anthem.
Imad Wasim was retained as the captain for Season 4. Colin Ingram was named the vice-captain for the franchise.
According to the rules, teams could retain upto 13 players across all the categories.
3 from the Platinum
3 from Diamond
2 from Gold
4 from Silver
1 from Emerging
Karachi Kings retained :
Platinum : Colin Munro, Babar Azam, Mohammad Amir.
Diamond : Colin Ingram, Imad Wasim, Usman Shinwari
Gold : Ravi Bopara, Mohammad Rizwan
Silver : ---
Emerging : ---
The PSL Draft for the 2019 season was held at 20th November 2018 in Islamabad.
Each team had to complete their main squad of 16 players, in addition to four supplementary players.
Karachi Kings, having already retained 8 players, needed to pick 1 player in the Gold Category, 5 in Silver, 2 in Emerging and 4 supplementary players.
In the Gold category, Kings picked Sialkot-born Zimbabwe allrounder Sikandar Raza. This will be Raza's first time in the PSL.
Karachi had all 5 picks remaining in the Silver category. In the first round, opening batsman Awais Zia was picked. Zia played 5 T20Is for Pakistan, the last of those coming in 2014.
In the 2nd round, legspinner Usama Mir was picked. Mir had represented Karachi in all the previous seasons but had not been among the retained players at first.
In the 3rd round, the Kings management surprised everybody by picking the relatively unknown Tasmanian speedster Aaron Summers. Summers has only played 1 T20 match to date, but has the ability to clock 90mph regularly.
In the next round, Kings picked fast bowler Sohail Khan. Khan had played for Kings in the first 2 seasons, but represented Qalandars in the 3rd season.
In the last round of the Silver category, Karachi Kings picked middle order batsman Iftikhar Ahmed. Iftikhar had played for Kings in the first season, Peshawar Zalmi in the 2nd season and Islamabad United in the 3rd season.
In the emerging category, batsman Ali Imran was the first pick. Imran made 430 runs in 9 innings in the 2018-2019 One-Day Cup. Legbreak bowler Abrar Ahmed was the 2nd Emerging pick. He had played for Kings in the 2017 season but his stint was cut short due to injury.
In the supplementary category, fast bowling all-rounder Aamer Yamin, Australian wicketkeeper batsman Ben Dunk, opener Jaahid Ali and England batsman Liam Livingstone were selected.
After the draft, teams were given the opportunity to pick an extra player. Kings chose 19 year old left arm offspinner Umer Khan.
SQUAD FOR 2019
Batsmen: Ali Imran, Awais Zia, Babar Azam, Colin Munro(New Zealand), Colin Ingram(South Africa), Jaahid Ali, Liam Livingstone (England), Iftikhar Ahmed.
All-Rounders: Imad Wasim, Ravi Bopara ( England), Sikandar Raza (Zimbabwe), Aamer Yamin
Wicket keepers: Mohammad Rizwan, Ben Dunk (Australia)
Fast bowlers: Sohail Khan, Mohammad Amir, Usman Shinwari, Aaron Summers(Australia)
Spinners: Usama Mir, Abrar Ahmed, Umer Khan.
Best possible XI
Colin Ingram (VC)
Mohammad Rizwan (WK)
Imad Wasim (C)
Written by Arham Tufail
You can find out more about him on his Twitter profile here.