Sarfaraz Ahmed (c) (wk)
Azam Khan (wk)
Aarish Ali Khan
Quetta Gladiators will be looking to bounce back from a disappointing campaign and make their mark in PSL 2024. They finished out of the play-off position for the first time in their history and that was largely down to their inexperienced bowling unit and their inconsistency with the bat. Long-serving opener Shane Watson left a void in their line-up after retiring from all forms of cricket and they have gone for the universe boss Chris Gayle to replace the Australian. Gayle will provide the fireworks at the top of the order and provide the much-needed experience in their squad.
Partnering Gayle at the top of the order will be exciting English talent Tom Banton, however, there are still doubts about his availability throughout the tournament. But, if available Banton and Gayle would be one of the best opening partnerships ever assembled in PSL history.
Quetta’s captain Sarfaraz Ahmed has struggled with his form in the recent past and was removed as the captain of the Pakistan national team and lost his spot in the squad. However, Sarfaraz has been performing in the domestic circuit once again and has been a part of the national team recently, providing a confidence boost prior to the start of PSL 8. Quetta’s performances will largely depend on their enigmatic captain.
Middle-order batsman Azam Khan was a revelation for Quetta last time out and he has been performing consistently in franchise-based leagues and the domestic circuit over the past few months. Azam can be a trump card for the Gladiators with his magnificent hard-hitting ability. He will provide the fireworks at the backend of the innings.
Quetta drafted in South African legend Dale Steyn as their supplementary pick, providing much-needed experience to their exciting young bowling unit. Naseem Shah and Mohammad Hasnain are the two young fast bowling prodigies of Pakistan cricket and will receive valuable bowling tips from Dale Steyn. Add to that the bowling skills of Usman Shinwari and Anwar Ali, Quetta have a settled but inconsistent fast bowling unit.
Spin is their strong suit though, the likes of Zahid Mehmood, Mohammad Nawaz, and Qais Ahmed make up a strong spin bowling department and Quetta will be looking towards the trio to provide them with crucial wickets in the middle overs of the matches.
The destructive all-around duo of Australian Ben Cutting and South African Cameron Delport is the backbone of this Quetta squad. They have the ability to bat according to the situation, possess the hard-hitting ability, and can be relied upon with the ball. Both are skillful with their variety of medium pace bowling and will be crucial to contain the opposition scoring rate.
Chris Gayle, Tom Banton, Cameron Delport, Sarfaraz Ahmed, Azam Khan, Ben Cutting, and Mohammad Nawaz is a strong batting line-up that can provide Quetta the stability they were missing last time out.
Quetta has always been right up there with the best performers in PSL history, having played in three finals and winning a trophy in PSL 4. PSL 8 can be their chance to get the much-needed momentum back.