It is no doubt that Karachi Kings had the worst campaign of Pakistan Super League (PSL 7) in the history of the league. Yes, it took them time to win their first trophy of the tournament and they did not win it by being victorious in all the 10 matches they played. But what happened with them this season was shocking.
They lost nine out of ten games and created not the records they had wanted. The first team to lose eight consecutive matches and the only team to lose 9 matches in a tournament are two records created by Karachi Kings in this season. But what went wrong for them? The probable reason could be the lack of quality players and the inability to formulate a winning combination followed by the absence of experimentation. All these factors led to a shameful PSL season for the Kings and an early ouster from the tournament.
Certain players were kept benched the entire season while some young players failed to utilize a golden opportunity to shine. Here’s a list of Karachi Kings players who did not perform/under-performed for the team in PSL 7.
6 Karachi Kings Players Who Failed to Perform in PSL 2022
6- Mohammad Taha
Mohammad Taha is an all-rounder who plays as a left-hand batsman and is a slow left-arm orthodox bowler and got into the cricket circuit as a U-16 player. The 21-year-old made his T20 debut in October 2020 in the match between Southern Punjab v Sindh in Rawalpindi where he represented Sindh as a batter and scored five runs in six balls.
As a batsman, Taha has played 5 innings and managed to gather 66 runs in them. His bowling stats aren’t much impressive also. He was given a chance to bowl in two innings in eight matches and in these two innings, the youngster did not garner any wicket and conceded 35 runs.
He was picked up by Karachi Kings in the draft as an all-rounder in a partial replacement of Qasim Akram but was used for batting purposes only. Unfortunately, the batter couldn’t get many opportunities to play despite featuring in five matches. He got the chance to bat twice for the Kings and in those matches, he failed to make a mark since he gathered zero and six runs in those. And in the one inning he played with the ball, Taha conceded 32 runs in four overs and had an economy of 8.00.
This raises many questions for the management. Why was an inexperienced player picked for so many matches when more talent was present on the bench? He could have been used as a bowler and should have had the position changed in the batting line-up. Did the selectors stake a glance at his records before they decided to induct him into the team? But it’s too late now as the team is out of the tournament.
5- Faisal Akram
Faisal Akram is not a new name in the circle of cricket but he is certainly new in T20. The youngster who has represented Pakistan in U-16 and U-19 cricket made his T20 debut in 2021 in the National T20 Cup where he represented Southern Punjab as a left-arm wrist spin bowler.
The 18-year-old’s T20 career comprises of four matches only and these four matches do not speak highly of his talents. Conceding 130 runs in the innings, Faisal took just one scalp and had an economy of 8.12.
Faisal Akram was not present for the entire season for the Kings. Representing the U-19 team, Akram was available in the Lahore leg only and did not participate in a single match for the franchise. Granted that the lad does not have a shiny short-format career but the Karachi side could have experimented with him.
With three bowlers namely Muhammad Amir, Muhammad Ilyas and Muhammad Imran Jr. forced out of the tournament due to injuries, the franchise could have given Faisal a chance with the ball. Other franchises took risks with new talents and it paid them off really well. Perhaps the inclusion of the youngster in just one or two matches could have changed the fate of the Kings.
4- Talha Ahsan
Talha Ahsan is another talent kept on the sidelines by the Karachi Kings. The Right-hand batsman and right-arm leggie were picked in the supplementary category during the drafts and the cricketer never got to hit the crease.
The 18-year-old hasn’t played first-class cricket or national domestic cricket rather he has represented the Sindh team in the domestic U-19 category and also has his names written in club cricket. In these categories, the lad has 280 runs and 14 wickets. Very little T20 cricket has been played by him. He was also absent in the domestic T20 National Cup.
Like Faisal Akram, this young talent also did not get the chance to play. The Kings went on with the same combination for many games. They made very few changes the entire season and hence he did not make the cut. Along with Mohammad Taha and Talha Ahsan, he is the third player who did not carry much experience and was still drafted and kept away.
3- Rohail Nazir
The brilliant cricketer in making, Rohail Nazir is an emerging yet very exciting name in Pakistan cricket. The cricketer led his side in the U-19 World Cup in 2020 where the team reached the semi-finals but couldn’t make it to the finals after suffering a defeat from arch-rivals India.
The wicket-keeper batter has an excellent First Class (FC) and A-List record. In the T20s, the Nazir has accumulated 552 runs in 39 innings. He managed these many runs at a strike rate of 122.66 with 56* being his highest score ever. But in spite of such bright statistics, the wicket-keeper hasn’t been accumulated in the PSL as he should have.
Rohail Nazir joined the Pakistan league club in 2020 with Multan Sultans. In 2021 he joined Islamabad United and for both these franchises, he played just five matches combined. This year, he was picked by Karachi Kings in the Silver category and like the other two franchises, they failed to utilize him. He played only three matches for the side in which he scored 47 runs.
A fine batsman such as him is not able to make a proper impact just because of the constant under-utilization from the teams. A league for the young, had he gotten ample opportunities Rohail would have been among a solid batter just like Haider Ali. He could have been beneficial for the Kings if more chances were given to him.
2- Sahibzada Farhan
Sahibzada Farhan’s name falls in the category of players who did not do too well in the tournament for Karachi Kings. The middle-order right-hand batter won the PCB Domestic Cricketer of the year award in 2021 and has bagged 1150 runs in domestic T20 seasons in 48 innings. He made his international debut in Zimbabwe T20 Tri-series where he played against Australia. His last international outing was also in the same year and he never made an appearance for the national side since.
When he was chosen in the supplementary category in the second draft of the PSL 7, there were celebrations all around as the cricketer is known for some solid performances in the domestic seasons. But he could not perform very well.
In this season of the league, the 25-year-old played five matches for the Kings, three in Karachi and two in Lahore. He could only aggregate 51 runs for his team and contrary to all the expectations his performance was below par. For the last three matches of the season, he got excluded from the team.
1- Mir Hamza
Even though Left-arm medium bowler, Mir Hamza came to the PSL party late, he came with a bang. Hamza has very few super league matches in his bag. He was either benched most seasons or not picked at all and the latter happened with the player this time too until Karachi player Muhammad Imran Jr. got injured and was ruled out.
The franchise decided to pick Mir as a replacement and he did not disappoint. In just four matches, Hamza gathered eight wickets including a four-wicket haul that landed the Kings their first and only win of the season. The only mistake Karachi did was to bring him to the side very late. Although he was not a like-for-like replacement for Muhammad Amir, imagine the impact on the team had he been drafted early in the season but an Amir replacement was never named.
Coached by names such as Peter Moores, and with a cricket giant Wasim Akram being the president, the Karachi Kings shouldn’t suffer the way they did in the tournament. The PSL is a tournament that nourishes and polishes young talent but the franchise could not do so. While other franchises such as Peshawar Zalmi, Multan Sultans, and Lahore Qalandars always come up with new talent, the contrary is observed for the Kings. Hopefully, the team has learned from their mistakes and they come back stronger next year.