President of Karachi Kings Wasim Akram watches fast bowler Usman Khan bowl during a training session at the ICC Academy. Image Credit: Karachi Kings

Dubai: Karachi Kings launched their preparation for the Pakistan Super League (PSL) at the ICC Cricket Academy under the watchful eyes of their Head Coach and Team Advisor Mickey Arthur and the legendary pacer Wasim Akram, the president of the team.

Speaking about the team’s chances in the fourth edition, Akram said: “It is a very exciting time for Pakistan, for the PSL and Karchi Kings. We will give our best and fight till the last ball.”

What I love about Karachians is their passion and professionalism. So on behalf of the team and the coach, I assure that we will fight till the last ball.

- Wasim Akram | Karachi Kings president

Arthur, who is also the coach of Pakistan national team, said: “We have got a very great squad and a very good management team. We will fight them all in every game and that is going to be good for us and we will come out well in this tournament.”

Imad Wasim, the Karachi team skipper is confident that all his players will deliver. “We will try and give our best and make it a special PSL for us.”

Akram, who will also be a commentator, has motivated the team with inspiring words. “Play the game like kings and the world will hail you. The game’s king will be Karachi kings.”

He evoked the enthusiasm among Karachi fans during the team’s anthem launching ceremony in Karachi just before the team took off for Dubai by saying: “Heart of Karachites beat for Karachi Kings.”

Akram, who was earlier associated with Islamabad United and then with Multan Sultans, said he feels at home with Karachi. “I feel I am at home and I am here to stay because I live in Karachi. Moreover, Karachi is the biggest city and apart from being the biggest city it is also the pulse. What I love about Karachians is their passion and they have the professionalism. So on behalf of the team and the coach, I assure that we will fight till the last ball.” Salman Iqbal, CEO of ARY network, is the owner of the team.

Akram also urged cricket fans to watch the PSL in large numbers. “PSL is by Pakistanis, owned by Pakistanis and they watch it vigorously wherever they are in the world. PSL is the biggest brand in Pakistan. We have a bunch of talented players who can win us the coveted trophy.”

Commenting on his team’s strength, Arthur said: “We have got some phenomenal batting strength, mixed up with some very good bowling. We have a balanced team but all the teams this year have got better and better. Whoever strikes form at the right time will come through.”

Leading Karachi’s batting line-up are Pakistan’s Babar Azam and Colin Munro of New Zealand, the top two batsmen as per ICC Twenty20 players’ rankings. Incidentally, Munro is the vice captain of the Karachi team.

Image Credit: Gulf News