In a surprising move, Karachi Kings have released Kumar Sangakkara and Chris Gayle ahead of the third edition of Pakistan Super League.
The Karachi-based outfit has also released Pakistan’s veteran batsman Shoaib Malik who recently did well in the three-match series against World XI. But perhaps, in an attempt to make up for the surprising releases, they have brought the former Pakistan skipper Shahid Afridi. The hard-hitting all-rounder had won the title in the last edition with Peshawar Zalmi and is likely to lead his new side.
In a major overhaul, the Karachi-based side also released former Sri Lanka captain Mahela Jayawardene and traded fast-bowler Sohail Khan, the second-highest wicket-taker in the second season, for Mohammad Rizwan from Lahore Qalandars.
On the other hand, the Qalandars also released some notable players ahead of the upcoming season. England opener Jason Roy, Pakistan star Azhar Ali and Chris Green have faced the axe for their poor show in the last season. The Lahore-based outfit also released former New Zealand star, Grant Elliott.
Defending champions Peshawar Zalmi released international stars Eoin Morgan and Tamim Iqbal but retained their marquee player like Kamran Akmal, who was the leading run-scorer in the second season. Islamabad United also followed suit as they have released Sam Billings, Shane Watson, Muhammad Irfan and Brad Haddin. United, meanwhile, will be coached by bowling legend Waqar Younis in the upcoming season. Quetta Gladiators, on their part, retained their skipper Sarfraz Ahmed and Kevin Pietersen for the third edition but released opener Ahmad Shahzad and Umar Gul.
The franchises released several players because it was mandatory for them to release ten of them, two in each category – Platinum, Diamond, Gold and Siver – including overseas players to accommodate newcomers Multan Sultans. The Multan-based franchise will sign players for their franchise next week and will make their debut in next season.