The T20 season didn’t end with the conclusion of the T20 World Cup 2022; actually, it started. With so many T20 leagues across the world, the Bangladesh Premier League is also set to introduce its ninth season, which will start on January 9. With seven teams, there will be a total of 46 games in the next edition. The tournament will end on February 16 in Mirpur. Among those seven teams, the Khulna Tigers will also try their luck to become the BPL champions.
Khulna Tigers have been part of the league since the very first season in 2012. The franchise didn’t take part in the 2015 season but played in the other seven seasons. Their best performance came in 2019, when they finished as runners-up after losing to the Rajshahi Royals in the final. But now, with new seasons, new hopes also arise. The franchise has picked some good players in the player draft that can surely bring them their first BPL title.
Khulna Tigers Squad 2023
Khulna Tigers ended the last season in fourth place after losing the eliminator to the Chattogram Challengers. But this time, the franchise will look to end its trophy drought. For that, they have also picked a strong squad. Veteran Bangladeshi opener Tamim Iqbal is the captain of the side, and former Bangladeshi cricketer Khaled Mahmud is the head coach. A total of 20 players have been selected by the franchise, and interestingly, nine out of 11 players are overseas stars. This team has great depth in batting.
Squad: Tamim Iqbal (c), Wahab Riaz, Naseem Shah, Avishka Fernando, Azam Khan, Mohammad Saifuddin, Yasir Ali, Nasum Ahmed, Nahidul Islam, Munim Shahriar, Sabbir Rahman, Dasun Shanaka, Paul van Meekeren, Shafiqul Islam, Pritom Kumar, Habibur Rahman, Mahmudul Hasan Joy, Andy Balbirnie, Fakhar Zaman, Sharjeel Khan
Fakhar Zaman, Sharjeel Khan, and the skipper are some of the most destructive openers in modern-day cricket. For the middle order, they have the likes of Avishka Fernando, Azam Khan, Sabbir Rahman, Dasun Shanaka, Andy Balbirnie, and Paul van Meekeren, who have played in various leagues around the world. Thus, it will be a long batting line-up to dismiss for any bowling opposition. However, the only concern is their bowling department. The franchise tried hard to do justice to the bowling by picking the Pakistani pace bowling duo of Wahab Riaz and Naseem Shah, but you can only play four overseas players in your playing XI. There are not many local bowlers for the Khulna Tigers who have good experience playing in a competitive environment.
Star performer from the last season
The batting department did click in the last season. Andre Fletcher was the top run scorer for Khulna in 2022. He also scored a brilliant century. Meanwhile, Mushfiqur Rahim and Yasir Ali also had a good season with the bat.
Top Bowlers from the last season
Thisara Perera was the highest wicket-taker for the franchise in the last season. Apart from him, Khaled Ahmed and Farhad Reza had a decent performance with the ball. But all three of these bowlers are not part of the current squad for the coming season.