The main problem facing Karachi Kings, who are yet to reach the final of the Pakistan Super League, is their players’ inability to play well together.
The Karachi side boast some of the best players in the country but have struggled to translate that into tangible success so far. The side features arguably Pakistan’s best T20I batsman in Babar Azam, Pakistan’s best T20I bowler in Muhammad Amir and their best T20I all-rounder in Imad Wasim.
They once again look like one of the strongest teams in the league this season, with skipper Imad having almost half of the Pakistan international side at his disposal.
Here are two players that can help Karachi Kings take the next step:
Babar Azam: The world’snumber one batsman in the shortest format may feature at number three considering the Karachi Kings have Sharjeel Khan and Alex Hales in their squad but the right-hander will be crucial to the side regardless of where he plays.
The only player who scored more runs for Karachi last year was Colin Ingram, who has since joined Islamabad United.
Babar has grown leaps and bounds since last year’s PSL and will be hoping to improve on his tally of 335 runs last year, especially considering his strike-rate was only 115.51.
The Pakistan T20I skipper will anchor the side once again but is becoming ever more capable of scoring quick runs as well. His yearly T20I strike-rate has improved every year since 2017, going from 119.72 in 2017 to 126.51 in 2018 to 136.99 in 2019 and to 143.47 in 2020.
With explosive players like Sharjeel, Hales and Cameron Delport in their top-order, Babar’s ability to keep one end safe can prove invaluable to Karachi Kings.
Muhammad Amir: Muhammad Amir may have been dropped for Pakistan’s recent T20I series against Bangladesh but the left-arm pacer is still the country’s premium fast-bowler in the shortest format.
Amir was in superb form during the Bangladesh Premier League (BPL) and almost guided his Khulna Tigers side to the title as he finished joint top of the wicket-taking charts with 20 scalps to his name.
The experienced 27-year-old tally of 13 wickets in last year’s PSL was also the highest of any bowler to play less than 10 games.
His ability to swing the ball means he will be more than a handful when the ball starts moving around and will be doing most of his work during the powerplay and at the death.