Saturday, 10 December 2016

Wasim Akram to miss IPL 2017 with Kolkata Knight Riders

Pakistan bowling legend Wasim Akram,who has served as the bowling coach and mentor of Kolkata Knight Riders, has mentioned that he won't be a part of Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) for Indian Premier League (IPL) 2017 due to "professional commitments and time constraints", the franchise announced on Saturday (December 10). The former Pakistan pacer was with the side for the last seven seasons and saw them with two titles - in 2012 and 2014 - during this period.

However, there hasn't been any update on if the 'Sultan of Swing' will make his return for the Indian cricket side, co-owned by Bollywood superstar Shah Rukh Khan (SRK).

Also Read:- IPL 2017 edition in real danger: BCCI

Akram, who was instrumental in forging one of the finest bowling line-ups in IPL, said he will miss being a part of KKR's set-up next year. "I have loved the camaraderie in KKR team and have enjoyed every opportunity to mentor the highly talented team over the years. I am surely going to miss being part of the dressing room but I wish the team continued success."

Venky Mysore, KKR's MD and CEO added, "We will miss Wasim bhai who has been part of the KKR family over the last few years and has played a significant role in our title triumphs in 2012 and 2014. We wish him the very best in  all his endeavours."

Also Read:- IPL 2017 set to start on April 5, final on May 21

Akram was, until now, the only Pakistani personality in the Indian Premier League, which has barred the participation of Pakistan cricketers 2012 onwards. After the Mumbai attacks 26/11 in 2008, there was an initial ban on Pakistani cricketers to play in the IPL. In 2010, however, they were a part of the auction but none of the franchises made a bid for them.

During its inaugural IPL season in 2008, organised by Lalit Modi, there were 11 Pakistani players playing in the IPL including Shahid Afridi, Shoaib Akhtar and Sohail Tanvir, who was the leading wicket taker in the 2008 edition.

Also Read:- IPL Auction 2017 to be held in February at Bengaluru

Kolkata Knight Riders CEO Venky Mysore has ruled out that there has been any pressure behind Akram's decision to not be a part of IPL 2017, according to Hindustan Times. However, there is still no word on whether Akram will be back for IPL 2018.


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