The fourth edition of the Pakistan Super League (PSL) is almost upon us with action set to get underway on Thursday in Dubai.
Six PSL franchises will battle it out for Pakistan’s top T20 crown over the next five weeks.
Here we profile the Karachi Kings franchise who are bidding to make the final for the first time in their history.
Imad Wasim (capt), Mohammad Rizwan, Babar Azam, Ravi Bopara, Usman Khan, Mohammad Amir, Colin Ingram, Colin Munro, Sikandar Raza, Awais Zia, Usama Mir, Aaron Summers, Sohail Khan, Iftikhar Ahmed, Ali Imran, Abrar Ahmed, Aamir Yamin, Jaahid Ali, Ben Dunk, Liam Livingstone.
Skipper – Imad Wasim
After taking charge of eight games in the 2018 edition, Pakistan all-rounder Imad Wasim has been handed the reins of Karachi Kings full time for the upcoming season.
Despite making the playoffs in each of the three editions held so far, the Kings have failed to advance to a single final. Their best finish so far in the tournament’s history is third place which they achieved in 2017 as well as 2018.
Coach – Mickey Arthur
The Pakistan head coach will continue in his role despite a potential case of conflict of interest that will be examined by the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) at the end of the season. Karachi can also call upon Wasim Akram for his experience with the former Pakistan pacer appointed as the team’s president.
Key players – Babar, Imad, Munro, Ingram
There is no shortage of batting firepower in the Karachi ranks with the likes of Babar, Ingram, Munro and Ravi Bopara in tow while in Pakistan pacer Mohammad Amir they have a man capable of leading the bowling attack.
It is in the all-round and spin departments that Kings find themselves short with a lack of recognisable names. They will be hoping Englishman Liam Livingstone can come good as an all-rounder.
Prediction – Playoffs
There is little doubt that Karachi will once again get to the playoffs, at least with the personnel at their disposal. But progressing to the final might be a step too far if Babar fails to fire.