Star England pacer Reece Topley has withdrawn from the upcoming edition of the Pakistan Super League (PSL) as he is nursing a niggle. He was set to represent the Multan Sultans in what would have been his maiden stint in Pakistan’s premier franchise league.
The England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) has denied giving the left-arm pacer a No Objection Certificate (NOC) to take part in the T20 tournament. Topley featured in 12 out of the 13 matches for the Durban Super Giants, who finished runners-up in the recently concluded SA20 2024. He bagged 13 wickets at an average of 25.31 and a strike rate of 18.
“[Topley] hasn’t received his NOC [no-objection certificate from England] and is out of the PSL,” Sultans owner Ali Tareen tweeted on Sunday, February 11.
Topley isn’t the only pacer that Multan would miss in the forthcoming edition of the PSL. The young and talented Ihsanullah has been ruled out of the tournament, owing to a long-standing elbow injury.
According to ESPNcricinfo, Topley’s injury isn’t too serious but the England management doesn’t want to take any risks with the T20 World Cup scheduled to be held in June in the West Indies and the USA. The report also mentioned that Topley’s injury isn’t bad enough to keep him out of the Indian Premier League (IPL).
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The Sultans’ management is trying their best to bring in replacements to bolster their side. As per reports, South Africa’s Nandre Burger, who also had an impressive SA20 2024 campaign, was being looked at by the Sultans as a potential replacement for Topley. However, the young left-arm pacer also didn’t get NOC from Cricket South Africa.
Now, England’s Olly Stone, who played in the SA20 and the ILT20 recently, is one of the frontrunners to step in for Topley. Also, Sri Lankan veteran pacer Dushmantha Chameera is another option but he suffered a left quadriceps injury on Sunday and has been ruled out of the remainder of the white-ball series against Afghanistan.
The PSL starts on Sunday, February 17. Multan Sultans finished second best in the last two editions of the tournament, losing to Lahore Qalandars in both finals. Mohammad Rizwan and Co. will hope to go the distance this year.
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