ISLAMABAD (NNI): Pakistan pacer Rumman Raees was appointed Islamabad United vice captain for the third edition of the Pakistan Super League (PSL), franchise owner Ali Naqvi announced on Saturday.
Rumman Raees will serve under Misbah-ul-Haq, who led the team to glory in the PSL’s first season. Former Pakistan spin maestro Saeed Ajmal, who has been part of the franchise for the past two seasons, has now been appointed United’s spin bowling coach for PSL3, Naqvi said at a press conference in Lahore. “We’ve always aimed for this franchise to be similar to a family, and these two appointments are a continuation of that belief,” Naqvi said while speaking to the media at Lahore’s Gaddafi Stadium.
“Rumman has come leaps and bounds from when we picked him up in the first PSL draft. And the way he has represented the franchise over the past two years made him the ideal candidate for this role,” he said. He added that it was the perfect time for him to be given the responsibility “as this allows him to be groomed under the tutelage of a great mentor like Misbah for this season.”
“The same is true of Saeed. He’s been part of the family for two years and we have nothing but praise for how he has represented us. He’s a great person, and a great player, and I am sure the young guys will learn a lot from him.” Naqvi said that the team’s staff had recommended Ajmal for the role, and that the franchise has “always left the cricketing decisions to the cricket people.”
Regarding the appointments, Dean Jones, the team’s head coach, said: “We believe that Rumman is a future leader for our franchise, and more importantly, a future leader for Pakistan. We have been most impressed by him not only as a cricketer but as an individual, and we will try to develop him even further in both these aspects.
“Saeed has been our chief entertainment officer, and we have huge respect for him as a cricketer and a future coach,” Jones said. “We have already seen him help develop Shadab Khan in PSL 2 and we want him to continue doing that. This opportunity here helps him expand his coaching skills.
“He’s a great presence in the dressing room, and we wanted to make sure that he continued to be a part of it, and this allows us to do that,” he added. Islamabad United Director Cricket and former great Waqar Younis also praised the positivity accompanying Ajmal’s appointment. “Saeed is someone whom I have worked with for years and I know how important he is to the atmosphere of a dressing room.”
The third edition of the PSL is set to begin in February 2018. Among other major announcements ahead of the season have been Imad Wasim’s appointment as captain of the Karachi Kings.
Shahid Afridi will also represent Karachi Kings in the season. The draft for the season, set to take place on Sunday, will see the six teams competing to complete their squads of 20 players from a pool of over 500 players.