Three players from Pakistan’s Champions Trophy-winning team have been roped into the upcoming Caribbean Premier League which begins on August 4: Babar Azam has been named a replacement for the injured Chris Lynn for the Guyana Amazon Warriors, while St Kitts and Nevis Patriots have called up Mohammad Hafeez in place of Ben Cutting and Hasan Ali for Kieran Powell.
Babar, with an average of over 50 in ODIs and T20Is, has been a consistent performer for Pakistan in the white-ball format. He averaged 32.33 for Karachi Kings in the Pakistan Super League this year, producing a number of match-winning knocks in their run to the semi-finals.
Warriors head coach Roger Harper rued the absence of Lynn, who scored 454 runs in the tournament last year, but said he found Babar’s talent “exciting”. “We are hugely disappointed to lose the talent of Chris Lynn to shoulder injury, he was the leading scorer last year and we were happy to have him back,” Harper said. “However, we are extremely delighted in getting a world-class replacement in Babar Azam. He is one of the most exciting batsmen in the world and we are sure that he will be a huge success for us at Hero CPL 2017.”
Seamer Hasan Ali, who will be taking Powell’s place, claimed 3 for 19 in the Champions Trophy final, and was the leading wicket-taker in the tournament with 13 scalps at 14.69. Powell is set to miss the tournament to play the Test series in England, which coincides with the CPL schedule.
With Cutting out injured since the IPL in April, Mohammad Hafeez will be back in the CPL, already having had a two-season stint with Warriors in 2013-14. The experienced Hafeez had made 57 not out as his team beat India by 180 runs in the Champions trophy final.
Patriots CEO Richard Berridge, said: “We have been fortunate to get such high-quality replacements that more than cover those players that we have lost. The Patriots management team feel this is the best squad that we have had going into a Hero CPL season.”