Four Quetta Gladiators players have bid goodbyes to the squad after the team beat Peshawar Zalmi on Tuesday to go through to the Pakistan Super League (PSL) final set to be played in Gaddafi Stadium, Lahore on March 5.
The withdrawals from English star Kevin Pietersen and his compatriots Luke Wright and Tymal Mills come amid security fears.
South African batsman Rilee Rossouw and New Zealand all-rounder Nathan McCullum have also opted not to travel to Lahore for the final.
“It’s with a heavy heart I will not be coming to Lahore. I have a young family and for me a game of cricket is just not worth the risk. I’m sorry as I know how much it means to you all and hopefully in the future the safety will not be in doubt to come play there,” tweeted Luke Wright.
Pietersen has been a major PSL attraction in the on-going as well as the inaugural edition of the league — he signed off with a 22-ball 40 for the Gladiators last night.
Tymal Mills was a key part of the Quetta attack with seven wickets in five outings.
Rossouw is currently their top scorer with 255 runs at 42.50 and a strike-rate 123.18.
“Unfortunately I will not be travelling to Lahore for the final but will be watching from home and cheering on the boys,” Mills posted in a note on twitter.
The Punjab government on Monday gave a go-ahead to the PSL organisers to stage the finale of the country’s franchise-based mega cricket league after weeks of speculation.
PSL Chairman Najam Sethi had said earlier that replacements will be available for foreign players if any opt out from the final.
The Punjab government also decided to provide both the finalists five-tier security protocol.