West Indies‘ Andre Russell showed why he is considered one of the finest all-rounders in the game as he picked up a hat-trick and scored a match-winning century for Jamaica Tallawahs in the Caribbean Premier League.
Trinbago Knight Riders batted first and amassed 223-6 thanks to 61 from Colin Munro and 56 from fellow Kiwi Brendon McCullum. However, Jamaica captain Russell pulled things back a bit right at the end, picking up the scalps of McCullum, Dwayne Bravo and Denesh Ramdin off successive deliveries.
Those runs saved proved crucial in the end. When Jamaica batted, they seemed down and out at 41-5 but Russell hadn’t given up. He teamed up with Kennar Lewis (51) to stitch together a match-winning partnership of 161 runs.
Russell smashed 121 not out from 49 balls with six fours and a staggering 13 sixes as the Tallawahs reached 225-6 with three balls to spare.
The opening batman has gone on to play eight Tests, 79 ODIs and 25 T20Is with his last appearance for the men in green coming in a T20 clash against Sri Lanka in October 2012.
The 36-year-old has stayed away from the domestic game since 2014 after being struck by tendinitis.
Now, after overcoming the illness, the opener has announced his return to playing competitive cricked and expressed his gratitude to the Shahid Afridi Foundation along with the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) for their support.
“I am fit and resuming cricket after a long time. My fans prayed for me because of which I am standing here and I am thankful for their support. I am also thankful to the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) and Shahid Afridi Foundation for helping me in getting rid of the illness,” Nazir was quoted as saying by the Express Tribune.
The swashbuckling opener is targeting playing in various T20 franchise leagues at this stage in his career.
“I am just resuming cricket so I will see how long I can play. I had offers of playing in T20 leagues before as well but I couldn’t participate as I was not fit, but now I am in a good shape and will be eager to play if I get a suitable offer,” he said.
Nazir has accumulated 1, 895 runs for Pakistan in 79 ODIs with a career-best knock of 160 which came against Zimbabwe in the 2007 ICC World Cup. He has registered two centuries each in the ODI and Test format.
The opening batsman had been handed a one-year ban in February after he failed to disclose a spot-fixing attempt during the second edition of the Pakistan Super League (PSL) to relevant authorities.
The batsman had also been imposed with a fine of a million rupees along with his one-year-ban by an anti-corruption tribunal.
The 28-year-old had already served his one-year ban before he attempted to appeal the monetary fine imposed on him. Simultaneously, the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) had also lodged an appeal against Hasan’s sentence, calling it too lenient.
Both the appeals were heard by independent adjudicator Justice Hamid Farooq on Friday with Hasana’s ban ultimately being extended to four years.
“The independent adjudicator Justice (retired) Hamid Hussain has accepted (the) PCB’s appeal and lifted the ban to four years while upholding the fine,” PCB legal adviser Taffazul Rizvi told the media after the hearing.
The independent adjudicator also upheld the monetary fine imposed on Hasan.
Hasan, along with Sharjeel Khan, Mohammad Nawaz, Mohammad Irfan and Nasir Jamshed had all been implicated in the spot-fixing scandal which rocked the second edition of the PSL.
His lawyer Kashif Rajwana has stated that the player intends to challenge Friday’s verdict in a court.
Hasan has played three ODIs and 10 T20Is so far for Pakistan and was a member of the victorious 2009 World Twenty20 winning squad.