(SNO) – Hussain Talat was earmarked as an exciting talent as early as the 2017 edition of the Pakistan Super League, when, in one of the only games he played, he stroked an irresistible 39-ball 56.
It isn’t so much about the runs as it is about the elegance with which he gets them. The left-hander possesses an array of shots that clearly signal natural talent more than modifications through hard work. He has built on that this year, scoring 201 runs at 33.50 and a strike rate of 131.37, which he supplements with handy medium-fast bowling.
Aged just 22, Talat is set to take his talents to Saint Lucia for the 2018 edition of the Hero CPL T20 Caribbean Premier League, which gets underway on 8th August. Talat’s own Twitter account first retweeted the international Cricketers Association, which said at 11:43 a.m. Saint Lucia time: “The long-awaited find of PCB & the immaculate all-rounder of @IsbUnited; @HussainTallat12 is a brilliant contributor with both bat & ball in the shorter formats of the game. On his brilliant abilities, he is now signed by the @StLuciaStars. #Congratulations #DealMaker #TeamICA”
A couple of hours later, he tweeted in his own right, a message that was picked up by the Stars own account: “CPL calling. Will be joining @StLuciaStars this season. Hope I do well for them.”
Talat may have been signed in replacement of another player, but no announcement has been made in that regard. Based on the Draft, which took place in March, the Stars are set to have their most powerful team since the CPL began back in 2013. Forthe first time, they will start the season under the leadership of someone other than former West Indies captain Daren Sammy. Whereas the Saint Lucian talisman remains in the side, this year Trinidad and Tobago allrounder Keiron Pollard has been tapped as captain.
Assuming all the drafted players are retained, last year’s top run scorer in the CPL, Lendl Simmons, Australian allrounder D’Arcy Short, West Indies opener Andre Fletcher and Sri Lanka wicketkeeper / batsman Niroshan Dickwella are expected to combine with allrounders Sammy, Pollard and Talat to create a formidable batting lineup. the bowling will be led by Pakistan’s Rumman Raees, New Zealand’s Mitchell McClenaghan, Afghanistani teenager Qais Ahmed, and West Indies pacer Kesrick Williams.
On paper, it’s the strongest team ever for the Saint Lucia franchise, which finished last in 2017. Despite the most recent performance, dwindling crowd support and reports of unpaid invoices from local vendors last year, spirits are high for 2018. The Government of Saint Lucia renewed the franchise for this yea’rs competition with a payment of close to EC$2,000,000.00.