The Melbourne Stars have replaced Pakistan fast bowler Haris Rauf with countryman Dilbar Hussain for the rest of the 2019-20 Big Bash League.
Rauf was instrumental during the first half of the Stars' BBL campaign this season, but has since joined the T20I squad for this month's series against Bangladesh. He will likely rejoin the Stars after the three T20Is in Pakistan.
Hussain, like Rauf, is a product of the Lahore Qalandars' development squad in the Pakistan Super League.
“Hussain has signed with the Stars as an international replacement player and has been named in the squad. The technical committee has approved Hussain joining the squad in place of Haris,” read a statement from the Stars ahead of Saturday's match against the Brisbane Heat at the Melbourne Cricket Ground. Unibet have Melbourne priced at 1.76 to beat the Heat.
The Stars will be without opening batsman Hilton Cartwright for the clash with the Heat. All-rounder Nathan Coulter-Nile has been included in the squad.
“Cartwright has not been named in the squad as he has fractured his right hand and is awaiting further recommendations from specialists,” added the Stars.
Rauf with Pakistan
Rauf, meanwhile, debuted for Pakistan in Friday's series opener at the Gaddafi Stadium in Lahore. He was deployed as a second-change bowler and conceded six runs in a wicketless opening over. He is targeting a berth in Pakistan's squad for the T20 World Cup in Australia later this year.
“It is a really great time out here for me and I am making most out of it. I know I have proved my potential and my next goal is to play for Pakistan in the T20 World Cup, which is also in Australia,” said Rauf.
“I never really planned my future in cricket. I grew up playing with a tennis ball until 2017, and never thought that I could play for Pakistan. But this dream was given to me by the Lahore Qalandars. I have the pace, the passion, and with all the development I started to believe that I can play top-level cricket.”
Pakistan lost the inaugural World Twenty20 (since renamed the T20 World Cup) final to India in 2007. They beat Sri Lanka in 2009's final.