In an exciting development, a total of eight talented Pakistani cricketers have been selected to showcase their skills in the upcoming edition of the prestigious Vitality Blast tournament in the United Kingdom. The tournament, which kicks off today at Birmingham’s Edgbaston stadium, marks the 21st edition of the thrilling T20 league that originated as the Twenty20 Cup back in June 2003.
Shaheen Shah Afridi
Among them is the highly regarded fast bowler Shaheen Shah Afridi, who will be representing Nottinghamshire Outlaws this year. Shaheen has previously showcased his prowess in the Blast, with a notable performance in the 2020 edition where he claimed four wickets in four deliveries against Middlesex while playing for Hampshire Hawks.
Another prominent figure is left-handed opening batsman Shan Masood, who will lead Yorkshire Vikings in this edition. Masood proved his mettle in last year’s Vitality Blast, emerging as the top run-scorer for the Derbyshire Falcons with an impressive tally of 547 runs, leading his team to the quarter-finals.
Experienced Test cricketer Hasan Ali, known for his prowess with the ball, has secured a contract with Warwickshire CCC for the season. Hasan will represent Birmingham Bears and is expected to spearhead the pace attack alongside the talented Chris Woakes.
All-rounder Shadab Khan, who captains Islamabad United in the Pakistan Super League (PSL), has signed a deal with Sussex Sharks, adding depth and versatility to their lineup. Shadab showcased his skills last season while playing for Yorkshire, and now he is set to make a significant impact in the tournament.
The explosive batsman Haider Ali has been signed by Derbyshire for both the county season and the T20 Blast. Haider, who has played 33 T20Is for Pakistan, has already made a name for himself in the Pakistan Super League, representing Peshawar Zalmi and Karachi Kings.
Left-arm spinner Zafar Gohar, who has consistently impressed for Gloucestershire CCC in the last three seasons, will be donning the Gloucester Gorillas jersey once again. With his all-round abilities, Gohar is expected to make a valuable contribution to his team’s success in the Blast.
Young pacer Zaman Khan, a product of Lahore Qalandars’ player development program, has been drafted by Derbyshire Falcons alongside Haider Ali. Zaman, who recently made his international debut for Pakistan in the T20I series against Afghanistan, is eager to showcase his talents on the global stage.
Completing the lineup is leg spinner Usama Mir, who will represent Worcestershire Rapids in the tournament. With prior experience playing for Pakistan in six ODIs and featuring in the Pakistan Super League for Karachi Kings and Multan Sultans, Mir adds an additional dimension to the Rapids’ bowling attack.
Cricket fans around the world eagerly await the scintillating performances of these talented Pakistani players as they take the field in the UK’s T20 Vitality Blast. With their skills, experience, and passion for the game, they are poised to leave an indelible mark on the tournament and entertain audiences with their explosive style of play.