PSL 2019: Andre Russell to replace Steve Smith for the Multan Sultans
What's the story?
Pakistan Super League side Multan Sultans have replaced the injured Steve Smith with West Indies all-rounder Andre Russell. They did so during the player replacement draft on January 24, to cover up for the big void left by Smith.
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The former Australian skipper is plying his trade in various franchise-based tournaments in order to fight his way back into the international landscape. He was a part of the Comilla Victorians in the Bangladesh Premier League, but had to fly back home owing to an elbow injury, that is to pile further misery by keeping him on the sidelines for up to six weeks.
It will be a great deal for him if he can manage to join the Rajasthan Royals in the IPL, which can serve as the right preparation prior to the World Cup.
The heart of the matter
Meanwhile, Andre Russell was previously a part of the two-time Champions Islamabad United. The wily all-rounder sparkled in the very first season, claiming the highest wicket taker's accolade. Having been picked up by the Sultans, he will join veteran stars in Shoaib Malik and Shahid Afridi.
The Sultans also drafted in James Vince, who is presently demolishing bowling units in the Big Bash. He came in for Joe Denly.
Elsewhere, seasoned opener Dwayne Smith was picked up by Quetta Gladiators to provide cover for former West Indies international Dwayne Bravo, while Hardus Viljoen and David Wiese were snapped up by Lahore Qalandars.
The all-new edition of the PSL is scheduled to commence on February 14, with title holders Islamabad United taking on Lahore Qalandars in Dubai. The very next day, Andre Russell and co. will kick-start their campaign against the Karachi Kings.