The newly introduced Lucknow franchise is looking to fill the holes in their squad before the 15th edition of the tournament begins. Notably, the team is on a hunt for a replacement for Mark Wood who pulled out of the Indian T20 League 2022 due to an elbow injury.
Earlier, reports suggested that Lucknow is set to sign the Bangladeshi speedster Taskin Ahmed as a replacement for Wood. But the deal fell through as BCB didn’t give the NOC to Taskin. Bangladesh is currently in South Africa playing a three-match ODI series, which will be followed by a two-match test series.
Now, if recent reports are to be believed, Lucknow is eyeing Zimbabwe star Blessing Muzarabani as a replacement for Mark Wood. However, Muzarabani’s role in the team is not yet confirmed. Whether Lucknow is looking at him as a full-time option or just as a net bowler is not clear. Muzarabani recently featured in the PSL and did well for Multan Sultans which caught the attention of ITL franchises.
Zimbabwean players in the Indian T20 League are not a common thing. If the deal between Lucknow and Muzarabani falls in place, he will be the first contracted player from Zimbabwe in the Indian T20 League after 8 years. Brendan Taylor was the last player from Zimbabwe to feature in the tournament in 2015 for Hyderabad. Other players from Zimbabwe to have featured in the Indian T20 League are – Raymond Price (for Mumbai) and Tatenda Taibu (for Kolkata).
Meanwhile, Lucknow will open their campaign against Gujarat on March 28 at the Wankhede Stadium in Mumbai. The tournament is set to start on March 26 with Chennai and Kolkata crossing swords in the opening encounter.