Mohammad Asif © Getty Images
Mohammad Asif © Getty Images

Dubai: Former Pakistan pacer Mohammed Asif will be one of the key players in the upcoming tennis ball cricket tournament, 10PL scheduled to be held in Dubai from March 19-23. The second edition of the tournament will be staged at the Sharjah Cricket Stadium. Asif will turn out for Shehenshah Warriors, Pakistan. In all 16 teams will be participating in the tournament.

Asif played 23 Tests, 38 ODIs and 11 Twenty20s for Pakistan before his international career came to a halt after he was arrested in the United Kingdom on charges of spot-fixing during a Test series against England, back in 2010. “I have played this form of cricket a lot on the streets of Pakistan. Almost all of us have learnt a lot by playing this brand of cricket. I am hoping to pass on my experience to the rest of the squad and along the way, gain a lot myself. I cannot wait to get back on the field at the Sharjah stadium,’’ said Asif.

In the first edition in addition to regular tennis ball cricketers, former Pakistan wicket-keeper batsman Zulqarnain Haider also participated in the tournament. This year apart from Asif, other international players like Sri Lanka s Thilan Thushara and Chamara Silva are also likely to play in the tournament. From India a number of players are listed in squads, alongside former pacer Kamran Khan, who played a season for Rajasthan Royals.

Earlier in the week at a gala dinner in front of a packed audience, former Pakistan captain Wasim Akram, also the brand ambassador for the tournament, unveiled the jersey, anthem and the trophy of the tournament. The tournament is the brainchild of UAE-based Petromann Events to manage, operate and market the Indian team. Petromann Events, brainchild of Mr Abdul Latif Khan, also known as Arif Khan in the sporting arena.

The tournament boasts the highest prize money for tennis ball cricket anywhere in the world and is valued at a total of 250,000 Dirhams.