Renegades adds spin shares with Afghan International

The Melbourne Renegades have scored an early victory over their rivals across the city with Afghan spinner Zahir Khan jumping off the Stars.

The new left-arm spinner has signed for the duration of KFC BBL | 11 as the club rounded out their squad for the T20 tournament, which begins on 5 December.

The 22-year-old joins compatriot and spin-bowling all-rounder Mohammad Nabi, who re-signed for a fifth season on Wednesday, in the Renegades squad for the 2021-22 edition.

Zahir got 14 wickets in 16 games, with an impressive economy rate of 6.76, while staying with the Melbourne Stars and Brisbane Heat over the past two seasons.

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He missed the selection in Afghanistan’s squad for the T20 World Cup in the UAE and last played for his country in a test against Zimbabwe in March this year, where he collected 2-81 in a loss of 10 wicket.

The spinner has played two matches in the Pakistan Super League since and collected 1-25 and 0-30 respectively for the Quetta Gladiators.

“I love Big Bash so much and was very happy to sign up for my third season in this amazing tournament,” Zahir said.

“I’m glad Renegades has given me this opportunity to show what I can do.”

Zahir joins Nabi, The English fast bowler Reece Topley and the Indian dough, Unmukt Chand as Renegades’ international contingent this season.

Clubs can sign up more than three foreign players to their roster, but only three can be in the 18-player squad at any one time.

Renegade’s head coach David Saker said Zahir had shown some promising signs in BBL over the past two years.

“He is a skilled bowler, has lots of variation and is a young player who will only continue to improve,” Saker said.

“Zahir is playing with a lot of energy and we believe he will add a difference to our bowling attack.”

Renegades also announced that the club and Victorian spinner Jon Holland had agreed to separate.

The 34-year-old played 17 games across four seasons for the Renegades and Adelaide Strikers, collecting nine wickets with an economy rate of 8.52.

Melbourne Renegades BBL | 11 Team:Aaron Finch, Cameron Boyce, Unmarried Chand (IND), Zak Evans, Jake Fraser-McGurk, Sam Harper, Marcus Harris, Mackenzie Harvey, Zahir Khan (AFG), Josh Lalor, Nic Maddinson, Shaun Marsh, Mohammad Nabi (AFG), James Pattinson, Mitchell Perry, Jack Prestwidge, Kane Richardson, Will Sutherland, Reece Topley (ENG)

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