Rashid Khan, the Afghanistan legspinner, was in the SA20 in South Africa over the last one month and now he is in the UAE to feature in playoffs stage of the ILT20.
The clash of the schedule of the two tournaments was the talking point before the two leagues kicked off in South Africa and UAE but evidently the overlap has not had an impact on the Afghanistan captain’s participation.
On Thursday (February 9), Rashid, the captain of MI Cape Town in South Africa, was named in the line-up of MI Emirates who were playing in the Eliminator of the ILT20 in Sharjah against Dubai Capitals.
The winner of the game will take on Gulf Giants in the Qualifier 2 on Friday (February 10) at the Dubai International Stadium. The final is on February 12 (in Dubai) and obviously, Rashid will be available to play there if MI Emirates reach that far.
MI Cape Town played their last league game in SA20 at the Wanderers in Johannesburg on February 6. With the team having failed to make the last 4 of SA20, Rashid, one of the most effective T20 bowlers in the world, was available for the other league. He had enough time to fly to Dubai.
Coincidentally, McKiney Clarke of MI Emirates got injured and the franchsie has brought Rashid as a replacement for the 19-year-old West Indian. “Rashid likes the MI global experience and he was happy to participate in the playoffs as a replacement,” said a source.
It was evident that the MI Emirates have taken the permission from the organisers of the ILT20 but the possibility of a player taking part in both leagues was unthinkable when the two competing tournaments started last month.
Experts, whom Cricbuzz has spoken to, said such convergence of players may be unprecedented so far in world cricket but one may see such things more often in future. Cricbuzz has reached out to ILT20 organisers for a formal comment.
“Fortunately, or unfortunately, Rashid comes straight in. We have 5-6 changes from the last game, with myself coming in and some of the other guys dropping out who got a game last time,” Kieron Pollard, the captain of MI Emirates, said at the toss.