TRINBAGO Knight Riders (TKR) will be without Shadab Khan for the first time in the 2017 Hero Caribbean Premier League (CPL), when the tournament leaders face Guyana Amazon Warriors from 12 noon at Providence, Guyana, today.
The Pakistani has been an instrumental figure on the team especially as a leg break bowler. Khan, who has taken 10 wickets in six matches, left the Caribbean earlier this week to return to Pakistan. Only Jamaica Tallawahs fast bowler Kesrick Williams has more wickets than Khan with 11 (before yesterday's Barbados Tridents/St Kitts and Nevis Patriots match).
The Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) has cancelled No-Objection Certificates given to 13 players playing in the CPL and the English county circuit, and has asked them to return to Pakistan to fulfil national and domestic commitments. Khan has also contributed runs in the middle of the order and has been brilliant fielding in the cover region.
TKR manager Colin Borde says Khan will be missed, along with the other Pakistanis. "Certainly a player of his quality is a huge loss, the Pakistanis leaving are a loss to the league," Borde said.
However, Khan and his fellow countrymen may return to the CPL before it concludes on September 9, as discussions between the PCB and the players are currently ongoing.
Borde said the TKR squad has depth and a meeting last night was planned to address the team for today's match. "We have a team that gives the captain options. The coaching staff and captain will sit down tonight (yesterday)." Borde said the slow wicket in Guyana and the oppostion will depend on who is selected today.
TKR lead the standings with 10 points after getting five wins and one loss thus far. TKR have played the most games, and Borde said his team will not relax as the other teams can move up the standings. "There is no complacency here, we are aware of how much games we have played and the other teams are climbing the table."
After defeating St Lucia Stars in their opening contest in St Lucia, TKR played their next five matches at the Queen's Park Oval winning four of them.
Trinbago Knight Riders*6*5*1*10*+1.241
St Kitts and Nevis Patriots*4*3*1*6*+0.489
Guyana Amazon Warriors*5*1*4*2*-0.251
St Lucia Stars*6*0*6*0*-1.725