Pakistani cricketers in CPL 2020

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The list of Pakistani cricketers in CPL 2020 contains some familiar names.

Pakistanis have been a regular feature of the Caribbean Premier League (CPL). For those who didn’t know, the eighth edition of the CPL is due to start on 18th August and will end on September 10th.

As ever, six teams – the Barbados Tridents, the Jamaica Tallawahs, St. Kitts and Nevis Patriots, the St. Lucia Zouks, the Trinbago Knight Riders, and the Guyana Amazon Warriors – will compete in a round-robin tournament.

Of these, four will progress to the knock-outs and, ultimately, the final.

The squads for all six teams have already been finalised, with each squad containing 17 men each. It is a requirement of the league that each squad must contain nine West Indians and two emerging players.

That leaves five slots on each team for overseas players.

Due to international commitments, none of England’s top players are available to compete in this year’s league. And the BCCI refuses to allow Indians to take part because they do not want to dilute the IPL. 

However, there are still several other nationalities represented, including three men, who are either Pakistani, or who have Pakistan connections.

Sohail Tanvir (St. Kitts & Nevis Patriots)

Tanvir is a Pakistan international cricketer who has earned a name for himself because of his unusual bowling action – although predominantly a medium-fast seamer, he can also bowl occasional left-arm spin.

He is also a hard-hitting left-hand batsman.

Tanvir has played two tests and 62 ODIs for Pakistan and may have made more international appearances but for a persistent knee injury which ruled him out of the game for two years.

It also meant that he missed out on a place in their 2011 World Cup squad.

Since then though, he has played cricket all over the world, including South Africa and England, where he has played county cricket with both Hampshire and Somerset.

He also played one season in the IPL with the Rajasthan Royals.

In Pakistan he plays his domestic cricket with The Rawalpindi Rams, whilst he has appeared for several PSL (Pakistan Super League) sides, including the Karachi Kings, the Lahore Qalandars, and the Quetta Gladiators.

He joined the CPL in 2016 with the Guyana Amazon Warriors, and, after four seasons with them, has made the switch to St. Kitts for 2020. 

Fawad Ahmed (Trinbago Knight Riders)

Ahmed was born in Swabi and made his first-class debut for Abbottabad in 2005.

He then went on to play for Pakistan Customs, but then fled the country claiming religious persecution.

Ahmed moved to Australia, where he was eventually granted citizenship, and played for his adopted country in T20I and ODIs matches against England that same year.

An all-rounder who bats right-handed and bowls right-arm leg break spin, Ahmed has forged a successful career in Australian domestic cricket, playing in the Big Bash League for the Melbourne Renegades, the Sydney Thunder, and the Perth Scorchers, and for Victoria in the Sheffield Shield.

He played for Trinbago in the 2018 CPL, and, after a season with the Sl. Lucia Zouks, has returned to them for the 2020 season.

He also played for the Quetta Gladiators in the most recent season of the Pakistan Super League (PSL). 


Saad Bin Zafar (St. Lucia Zouks)                     

Zafar was born in Gujranwala, Pakistan, but then immigrated to Canada, for whom he plays international cricket.

An all-rounder, who bowls left-arm orthodox spin, and bats left-handed, he played for St. Kitts in the 2018 version of the CPL. In fact, he joined their campaign at the play-off stage as a replacement for the Bangladesh all-rounder Mahmudullah.

He has also played franchise cricket of the Vancouver Knights in Canada. And was the leading wicket taker for them last season.

Zafar was also selected to play in the inaugural edition of the Euro T20 Slam by the Amsterdam Knights, before that tournament was subsequently cancelled.

More recently he featured for the Falcon Hunters the Qatar T10 league. Not only was he amongst the leading wicket takers but also part of a side that were crowned champions.

He has played 11 T20Is for Canada, and taken 17 wickets, with a bowling average of 16.76, and best figures of 3/8. 

We hope that the Pakistani cricketers in CPL 2020 give a good account of themselves.

This is important as Pak cricketers have been denied opportunities to play international cricket in the past few years.

Cover image credit: Sohail Tanveer