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Yasir Arafat disappointed at PSL exclusion

Yasir Arafat disappointed at PSL exclusion
Yasir Arafat has 277 wickets from 217 Twenty20 games.
©REUTERS / Action Images

Pakistan all-rounder Yasir Arafat expressed his disappointment at not being picked up in the player draft of the inaugural edition of the Pakistan Super League (PSL).

Arafat, who played his last international game for Pakistan in 2012 is a seasoned campaigner in the Twenty20 format having played 217 games in his career.

With 277 wickets from 215 innings at an average of 21.60, Arafat is the third highest wicket-taker in T20 cricket behind Lasith Malinga and Dwayne Bravo.

After failing to be picked by any of the five franchises, Arafat is saddened by the fact that he will not be able to play in a T20 league organised by his country.

“This was a massive let down and disappointment for me as I have been playing this format of cricket for the last ten years or so with many teams; I have literally played in all the top leagues around the globe,” told Arafat in an exclusive interview with www.PakPassion.net

“I also happen to be one of the highest wicket-takers in the Tweny20 format.

“What hurts most is that amongst the ninety or so players picked by different franchises, I do not have a place in any team in a tournament which is being played in my home country.” 

Between 2013 and 2015, Arafat has played 16 matches in the Big Bash League for the Perth Scorchers and has picked 27 wickets at an average of 17.37.

Despite his proven track record in various T20 leagues across the globe, Arafat fails to understand why he was ignored in the PSL draft process.

“It is amazing that for someone who is invited to play by foreign leagues in different countries, I am ignored by organizers in my own country.

“I find that incredible to say the least and I cannot imagine anything more shocking for a player like myself.

“I could almost understand this if I was an inexperienced domestic player making my way into cricket but here I am, a Twenty20 specialist with a proven record and performances to match, yet I cannot find a place in this league.” 

However, Arafat has wished the organisers of the PSL the best and is confident that the tournament will be a great boost for the Pakistani domestic players.

“Regardless of how things have gone for me in the draft, I wish the organizers of the tournament the very best and pray for its success as it will bring great benefits for my country.

“Apart from the obvious benefits of projecting a positive image of Pakistan, this tournament will be a great boost for Pakistan’s domestic players.

“Our younger players have been deprived of playing in front of big crowds and in high profile tournaments so this will be a great opportunity to gain valuable experience by playing in front of crowds and also alongside some top names in international cricket.” 

The 33-year-old revealed that he has let go of an offer to play in the Masters Champions League (MCL) tournament but is looking to reconsider after being snubbed at the PSL.

“I was a very strong candidate with significant financial rewards for inclusion in the MCL.

“This was obviously due to my track record and the fact that I am a current player but I chose to forego that offer in favour of the PSL which was something I felt really proud of as it was a league which belongs to my country.

“However, given what has happened now, I will re-consider and discuss with my representative and MCL organizers to see if there is still an opportunity there.” 

In his career for Pakistan, Arafat has played three Tests, 11 One-Day Internationals and 13 T20Is between 2000 and 2012. 

© Cricket World 2015