3 players who may have played their last PSL
There are quite a few players who seem to be in their twilight of careers and with a dip in form, they might be ruminating about retirement so let's take a look at a list of the players who may have regaled the crowds for the last time in Pakistan Super League this year.
Shane Watson, the quintessential T20 batsman, became an instant success since the advent of PSL. He has shredded many bowling attacks insolently and used all his experience to great effect and without a doubt, Watson has remained indispensable to Quetta's phenomenal success over the years.
Last season, he amassed 438 runs and scored these colossal number of runs at an average of 43 however in HBL PSL V, he couldn't really find his groove and there was a noticeable dip in form as he accumulated 247 runs in nine games and the average plummeted to 27.
He scored a blistering 80-run knock albeit for a losing cause against Multan Sultans in match 12 of PSL V which emphatically shows he still got enough in his tank to deliver the goods and one mediocre season in no way effects his desirability in T20 leagues around the globe. That said, the major point is that he has already announced his retirement from professional cricket in Australia and made it clear that his season for his side Sydney Thunders in 2019 was his last.
He made his international debut for Australia way back in 2002 and retired after an illustrious international career in 2016. He has always been a most sought out player in Pakistan's premier T20 tournament and he was the first foreign player to be picked in the draft in the inaugural edition.
Watson was appointed Australian Cricketers' Association president in November 2019 and with the focus shifting on the administrative side and dwindling fitness, it will be a challenge for him to stay on the field and turn up next season.
Watson has enjoyed his company with Quetta Gladiators family and on numerous occasion, he has expressed how he holds Nadeem Omer in high esteem and so it's safe to say that the cordial relations with the owner played a big role in Watson pursuing with PSL this year and so it remains to be seen if he would come again to join his favoured team in PSL VI.
Dale Steyn, who can rip through the stumps like he was born to do this, was inarguably the top-billing signing in the HBL PSL V and right through the players draft, he hogged the limelight and rightly so especially because Pakistanis adore fast bowlers a lot and the country has been a breeding ground for producing outstanding fast bowlers.
It was a delight to watch Steyn return to the shores after more than a decade and inspire the next generation of fast bowlers. He got the ball to talk in four games in this unfinished PSL season while representing Islamabad United and he has surely got the firepower to continue haunting batsmen but it's a widely known fact that tearaway quicks often fell prey to lingering injuries especially in the late 30s and so how he feels about his body and fitness levels cannot be determined at the moment.
Steyn hasn't been included in the contracted players' list for 2020-2021 season which hints that the 36-year-old is not part of board's plans and this might as well kill the purpose for Dale to toil in competitive cricket.
He had a good reason to partake in PSL V as it would have helped him prepare for T20 World Cup in Australia later this year but keeping himself fit and going through the drills and routine for T20 leagues around the world might not be his priority.
It's been more than a year that Yasir Shah hasn't been able to get on top of his game and his patchy run in the Test format also exposed the dearth of quality replacements in the domestic circuit.
While Misbah-ul-Haq and company are trying their best to get Yasir nailing his leg-spinners and wrong un's but the signs of withering are quite evident. If he is unable to turn the tide for in his favour during the Test series against England and then New Zealand and doesn't live up to the expectations, the franchises may look past the leggie and that is the world of T20 leagues where one day you are in the limelight and suddenly a drop in form doesn't even get you an invite to the parties. The odds are against him because he has never really made it big in the shorter format.
Even in PSL V, Yasir was drafted in as a replacement for injured Mohammad Mohsin who had a split-webbing that ruled him out from the season and paved way for the veteran spinner to take his place in Peshawar Zalmi's squad. He managed three scalps in four games and bled 112 runs in total.
The former number one Test match bowler and the quickest to get to 200 wickets in the longer format is worried about his lean patch but this break owing to the COVID-19 outbreak could very well present him with an opportunity to assess his weak-links and get back on the field with renewed vigour once the world overcomes the ongoing health crisis.