Qalandars have released Ben Dunk, Samit Patel, Dilbar Hussain, Agha Salman, Joe Denly and Tom Abell. They now have room for three picks from the Gold category, two from Silver, two from emerging and one each from Platinum and Diamond.
Peshawar Zalmi, who are in a rebuilding phase, managed to retain eight players with Wahab Raiz and Liam Livingstone as Platinum picks. They have released their all-time leading run-getter Kamran Akmal, but there is a chance that he will be picked back up as a Gold category player in the draft. Haider Ali, Shoaib Malik and Sherfane Rutherford are retained in the Diamond category. They will have space for one Platinum and four Silver category players, and two emerging players.
Title holders Multan Sultans retained their best bet Mohammad Rizwan, who was in the Sliver category until last year but has now been elevated to the Platinum category. Riley Rossouw, Imran Tahir, Sohaib Maqsood, Khusdil Shah and Shahnawaz Dahani stay on board, while Chris Lynn, Usman Qadar, Sohail Khan and Adam Lyth have been released. Sultans also traded Shahid Afridi and James Vince to Quetta Gladiators for Diamond and Silver draft picks.
Gladiators kept their faith with Sarfaraz Ahmed who will continue to lead the side. They have released Chris Gayle, Faf du Plessis, Tom Banton, Ben Cutting, Usman Shinwari, Cameron Delport and Dale Steyn but retained their core group of local players Mohammad Nawaz, Mohammad Hasnain and Naseem Shah. They can now pick one Platinum, one Diamond and five Silvers alongside two emerging players.
For the first time in PSL, right-to-match cards have been introduced allowing PSL franchises to buy back a maximum of one player that they have released at the draft by paying the respective fee against each category – Platinum (PKR 2.8 million), Diamond (PKR 1.75 million), Gold (PKR 1.4 million), Silver (PKR 0.8 million), Emerging (PKR 0.45 million). Each team is allowed to pick two additional players in the supplementary round. The franchises have the right to exercise one wildcard pick as well.
The seventh edition of PSL will begin on January 27, with the draft to be held on December 12 in Lahore. The league, which begins about a month earlier than usual to make room for Australia’s upcoming tour in March-April, will have its final on February 27. Each of the six franchises are allowed to retain as many as eight players from their previous roster and pick another eight in the draft. Players who were picked up as replacements for the Abu Dhabi leg of the PSL earlier this year are not considered in the original roster.
Islamabad United (8) – Asif Ali, Hasan Ali (both Platinum), Faheem Ashraf (Diamond), Shadab Khan (Diamond, Brand Ambassador), Alex Hales (Gold, Mentor), Azam Khan, Mohammad Wasim Jnr (both Gold) and Paul Stirling (Silver)
Karachi Kings (8) – Babar Azam, Imad Wasim (both Platinum), Mohammad Amir, Mohammad Nabi (both Diamond), Joe Clarke (Gold, Brand Ambassador), Aamir Yamin, Sharjeel Khan (both Gold) and Mohammad Ilyas (Silver)
Lahore Qalandars (8) – Rashid Khan, Shaheen Shah Afridi (both Platinum), Haris Rauf (Diamond, Brand Ambassador), David Wiese, Mohammad Hafeez (both Diamond), Ahmed Daniyal, Sohail Akhtar and Zeeshan Ashraf (all Silver)
Multan Sultans (7) – Mohammad Rizwan, Rilee Rossouw (both Platinum), Imran Tahir (Diamond, Mentor), Sohaib Maqsood (Diamond), Khushdil Shah (Gold, Brand Ambassador), Shahnawaz Dahani and Shan Masood (both Gold)
Peshawar Zalmi (8) – Liam Livingstone, Wahab Riaz (both Platinum), Haider Ali, Sherfane Rutherford, Shoaib Malik (all Diamond), Hussain Talat (Gold), Saqib Mahmood (Gold, Brand Ambassador) and Tom Kohler-Cadmore (Silver)
Quetta Gladiators (7) – James Vince, Sarfaraz Ahmed (both Platinum), Iftikhar Ahmed, Mohammad Nawaz (both Diamond), Shahid Afridi (Gold, Mentor), Mohammad Hasnain (Gold, Brand Ambassador) and Naseem Shah (Gold)
Umar Farooq is ESPNcricinfo’s Pakistan correspondent