BY Kevin Mapasure
Zimbabwe national cricket team batsman Sikandar Raza’s stock continues to rise on the world stage, particularly in the T-20 format where he has become a household name in various leagues.
Having been participating in the lucrative Bangladesh Premier League (BPL), where he would have earned himself a fortune, the right-handed explosive batter switches focus to the equally richly rewarding Pakistan Super League (PSL) where he will be representing the Karachi Kings with their first match of this year’s edition coming against Mutan Sultans on Wednesday in Dubai.
Raza will earn a basic salary of US$50 000 for his participation at the tournament after he was put in the gold category during the player draft that took place late last year.
The top category is the platinum class where players earn a basic salary of US$140 000 followed by the diamond class which guarantees players of at least US$70 000.
The gold class is the third highest category with the silver and emerging categories rewarding at least US$25 000 and US$10 000 respectively.
At the PSL, Raza will be among a group of world super stars that include ex-South Africa captain AB de Villiers as well as former Australia skipper Steve Smith, among others.
AB de Villiers is in the same team as Zimbabwe national team batsman Brendan Taylor, who is in line for his PSL debut after he was picked as a supplementary player by Lahore Qalanders, who open their account for this edition with a match against Islamabad United on Valentines’ Day.
Taylor will be tussling for a batting slot with de Villiers, Pakistan’s Fakhar Zaman and Sonail Akhtar.
While Taylor will not earn as much as Raza, his debut would be a good opportunity for him to earn bigger in the next edition if he performs well.
Both players were at BPL together with Sean Williams where they lined up their pockets quite well.
With Zimbabwean players struggling to make it into the Indian Premier League which pays fortunes, the PSL and the BPL have provided them with opportunities to earn big in the game.
The Zimbabwe national cricket team is currently idle as they negotiate for a series with India, while the domestic league is in full swing with Logan Cup matches.
Zimbabwe cricket players’ earnings have dwindled over the years and there have been frictions between players and the board over finances.
And with Zimbabwe failing to make it to the International Cricket Council World Cup, it was another lost opportunity for the players to make fortunes from the bonuses that accrue from participating at such events.
The PSL will be a huge experience for the Zimbabwe duo as it will take them from Dubai to Abhu Dhabi as well as Sharjah, while two Pakistan cities, Lahore and Karachi will host the later matches.