Quoting a BPL official, cricbuzz reports that Pakistani fast bowler Mohammad Amir and Chris Gayle from West Indies are among the foreigners, along with 48 from England and four from Australia are keen to play in the third edition of the exciting Twenty20 league.
“So far 182 foreign players including 52 from Pakistan and 48 from England have formally expressed their interest to play this year,” said BPL technical committee member Khaled Mahmud.
“Among the top names are Misbah-ul-Haq, Shahid Afridi and Mohammad Amir whose ban has been lifted recently, Chris Gayle of the West Indies, Ravi Bopara of England and Kumar Sangakkara of Sri Lanka.”
Bangladesh Cricket Board (BCB) is staging the Twenty20 tournament from November 21, two years after it was halted in the wake of a match-fixing scandal.
BCB, under pressure to bring back international cricket to the country, said it had received a good response to the league despite the security fears.
Australia this month called off its series after official warnings that extremists may attack Western interests. Tensions have since heightened after the murders of an Italian aid worker and a Japanese farmer in the space of five days.
“We have assured adequate security for all the cricketers playing here. So there was no major concern from the foreign players,” said BCB spokesman Jalal Yunus.
The lottery for BPL players will be held on October 31. Each of the six franchises in the tournament will be able to register seven foreign cricketers.
Pakistan Cricket Board barred its players from the second edition of BPL in 2013 after Bangladesh refused to tour Pakistan, citing security fears. But ties between the two boards have improved in recent days after Bangladesh sent its women’s cricket team to Pakistan.