Gladiators’ captaincy conundrum: Sarfaraz Ahmed’s fate hangs in the balance

Pakistan Super League edition 9 is all set to kick off from February, 17th in Lahore with all teams eyeing to grab the prestigious trophy.

In an exclusive interview with Cricket Pakistan, Nadeem Omar, the owner of Quetta Gladiators, shed light on the team’s deliberations regarding the captaincy, indicating a potential shift in leadership dynamics.

“Sarfaraz Ahmed has always been in our hearts. He has played a big part in Quetta Gladiators’ success. He has led for 8 years. For Pakistan team, Karachi, and our club, he has always fulfilled his duties with dedication. There is no doubt about his leadership skills. Unfortunately, the franchise’s performance has been up and down in the last 3-4 years. It is said that the captain performs well only when the team is good. This time the team has improved. Now our new coach Shane Watson has come to Pakistan. He believes Sarfaraz should be given a break from captaincy. We have not made any final decision yet,” Nadeem said.

Furthermore, Nadeem stated that Rilee Rossouw can emerge as a potential alternative for captaincy.

“Rilee Rossouw, a possible alternative, has not led any team yet, so we are confused. Whether Sarfaraz is captain or not, this team will remain his. If we feel satisfied, we will make a decision. We have left this decision to Sarfaraz and Watson. The way the team has performed, people also want change. We have made enough changes,” he further added.

The anticipation builds with the impending arrival of cricket legends Sir Vivian Richards and potentially Kevin Pietersen, alongside the return of Rossouw to the squad. Omar hinted that a resolution regarding Sarfaraz’s fate would be reached within 2 days.

“I am glad that Sir Vivian Richards is coming. Rossow has also returned to the team. If Kevin Peterson also joins then Quetta’s core team will be back, which performed very well. Everyone will get an answer regarding Sarfaraz within 2 days,” he said.

Nadeem also stated that Watson would be given complete autonomy to make decisions, signaling a departure from the conventional team management structure.

“During the HBL PSL, Shane Watson and Moin Khan will both be present in our dugout, but we will give Watson complete freedom to do as he pleases. Moin, including Sarfaraz and me, was under a lot of pressure, so we have entrusted all responsibility to Watson this time. He also has experience and has been a fantastic T20 player. Hopefully, he will be successful,” he concluded.

With the HBL PSL on the horizon, all eyes are on Quetta Gladiators as they navigate through this critical decision that could potentially reshape the team’s fortunes in the upcoming tournament.