Sydney Thunder rope in Afghan pace sensation Fazalhaq Farooqui for BBL 12 as David Willey’s replacement

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    Afghanistan’s emerging pace sensation Fazalhaq Farooqi has signed up with the Sydney Thunder for the upcoming season of the Big Bash League (BBL). Farooqi has been signed as a replacement player for England left-arm pacer David Willey who has withdrawn his name from the competition.

    Willey was drafted as a platinum player by the Sydney-based franchise in the BBL overseas players draft that was held in August this year. With his seniors from the national team including the likes of Rashid Khan, Mohammad Nabi, and, Mujeeb Ur Rahman already having made a mark in the BBL, Farooqui would now be eager to prove a point or two this time around.

    Fazalhaq Farooqi is an emerging talent: Sydney Thunder GM

    “Fazalhaq Farooqi is an emerging talent. He joins Thunder in great form after playing exceptional cricket in the World T20 Cup and the Asia Cup tournament,” the Sydney Thunder general manager Andrew Gilchrist said as quoted by the official website of the franchise.

    “While it was very disappointing to have lost David Willey, it has opened the door for Farooqi to further enhance his reputation and growing status in world cricket,” the statement read.

    “Afghanistan has enjoyed a tremendous representation in the BBL over the years. Rashid Khan has been embraced by Adelaide Strikers fans as a genuine superstar and adopted South Australian, while others, including Zahir Khan, Noor Ahmad and Mohammad Nabi, Mujeeb Ur Rahman and Qais Ahmad have made their marks,” it added.

    “We fully expect Fazalhaq will only further enhance the growing reputation of cricketers from Afghanistan being fearless cricketers and extraordinary entertainers.”

    Fazalhaq Farooqi is yet to establish himself at the international platform, but he has succeeded in making some impact early on in his career. He showcased impressive performances in two multi-nation tournaments this year.

    The left-arm pacer took a three-wicket haul against the eventual champions Sri Lanka in the opening encounter of the Asia Cup 2022 with figures of 3/11 from his 3.4 overs at an outstanding economy of three including a maiden.

    The 22-year-old challenged the hosts Australia with his good bowling performance during their T20 World Cup Super 12 encounter at the Adelaide Oval where he finished with impressive bowling figures of 2/29 from his four overs at an economy rate of 7.3.

    Fazalhaq Farooqui is known for his ability to fire well-disguised yorkers and that is what must have prompted the Sydney Thunder to sign him for BBL 2022/23.

    Sydney Thunder Squad

    Ben Cutting, Ollie Davies, Brendan Doggett, Fazalhaq Farooqi, Matthew Gilkes, Chris Green, Alex Hales, Baxter Holt, Nathan McAndrew, Alex Ross, Rilee Rossouw, Daniel Sams, Jason Sangha, Tanveer Sangha, David Warner.

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