Peshawar Zalmi are looking to make a record fourth straight final in this year’s Pakistan Super League (PSL) 2020 but their plans could land in jeopardy as several overseas players of the squad decided to withdraw from the tournament owing to the coronavirus fears. The Zalmi have their all-important final league game against table-toppers Multan Sultans in Karachi on Friday and are thinking nothing but a win to secure a place in the last four.
With a number of overseas players leaving the tournament, the Zalmi management sought the permission from the PSL’s technical committee to allow it to include head coach Darren Sammy and batting coach and mentor Hashim Amla as players in the squad to make up for the lost players ahead of the Sultans game.
Pakistan’s ARY Sports cited reliable sources to confirm Zalmi’s move. Among those foreign players who decided to withdraw from the tournament are Liam Dawson, Lewis Gregory, Carlos Brathwaite and Liam Livingstone.
Sammy started as the captain of the Zalmi this year but midway into the tournament, he stepped down because of poor form and fitness and was made the franchise’s head coach for two years. Left-arm Pakistan seamer Wahab Riaz replaced Sammy, who led Zalmi to the PSL title in 2017, as the skipper.
The 36-year-old Caribbean, who has also given the West Indies world titles in T20s, also took the Zalmi to the 2018 and 2019 PSL finals. Sammy has played in 308 T20s in which he has scored 3.8k runs and taken 159 wickets.
Hashim Amla has been a reputed T20 player as well
Amla, who quit international cricket not too long ago, was roped in as the Zalmi’s batting coach and mentor earlier this year and the acquisition was announced by the franchise owner Javed Afridi. The 36-year-old South African is no novice in T20s as he has played in 155 matches to score over 4,200 runs with two hundreds at a strike rate of 126 plus.
36-year-old Amla has also made a name of himself in the Indian Premier League where his strike-rate is 141 plus. Sammy has also played in 68 and Amla in 44 international T20s, respectively.