Pakistan’s star all-rounder Shahid Afridi completed his move to Pakistan Super League (PSL) franchise Karachi Kings from champions Peshawar Zalmi on Tuesday, Pakistan Cricket Board confirmed.
The former Pakistan skipper’s departure comes as a major blow for Zalmi who boasted a huge fan-base throughout the country due to Afridi’s presence in their dressing room.
The switch comes after reports earlier this year that Afridi was not happy with Zalmi owner Javed Afridi’s plans for the franchise. However, two Bangladeshi superstars Tamim Iqbal and Shakib Al Hasan also played for Peshawar Zalmi in the previous season. So, Bangladesh fans will be hurt to see Afridi in different team this year.
“The biggest trade of the HBL PSL was finalised today confirming Boom Boom Shahid Afridi’s move from Peshawar Zalmi to Karachi Kings,” said a PCB press release.
“As part of the trade, Peshawar Zalmi and Karachi Kings will be swapping picks in the Gold and Silver categories of the Player Draft,” it added.
Afridi played a major part in Zalmi’s triumphant campaign in the second PSL season and also contributed well for the team’s play-off stage exit in the inaugural edition last year.
“Shahid is a world-class player and the entire Peshawar Zalmi family thanks him for his contributions to our team,” said Javed who is also Afridi’s cousin.
The Karachi Kings owner expressed his delight that the trade was finalised. “Shahid Afridi is the biggest name in Pakistan cricket and we are extremely pleased to have him on board,” said Iqbal.
The third edition of Pakistan’s very own franchise-based T20 league is expected to be staged early next year in the United Arab Emirates. The tournament will also feature a sixth team this time after Schon Group successfully acquired the Multan Sultans franchise in June.