The Big Bash League could be about to enjoy soaring popularity in Afghanistan with one of the country's brightest prospects on the verge of a BBL deal.
Labelled by David Warner "a superstar in the making", teenage leg-spinner Rashid Khan will head to the Adelaide Strikers for the KFC BBL summer, according to a News Corp report.
Rashid impressed Warner, who captained him at IPL franchise the Sunrisers Hyderabad, where he was the first Afghani to play in the India-based competition. He finished the season there with 17 wickets in 14 matches and an economy rate of just 6.62.
Rashid had been attracting interest from various BBL clubs, with Sixers captain Moises Henriques – also a teammate at Sunrisers – expressing interest in luring him for this summer.
Quick Single: Henriques full of praise for Afghan teammate
After the 18-year-old took 3-19 against Gujarat in an early season match, Warner was full of praise.
Quick Single: Warner wrapped with new spin star
"He's a superstar in the making," Warner said in April. "He adds a great dynamic to our team ... he's stepped up to the mark as a youngster and he's helped us out tremendously."
With Australian cricket's pay dispute resolved, the movements BBL teams have been making behind the scenes are about to start surfacing, with the Melbourne Stars and Adelaide Strikers among those set to make big moves.
Last season's leading run-scorer, Ben Dunk, is reportedly set to move from the Strikers to the Melbourne Stars, where he could form a potent opening partnership with Englishman Luke Wright.
Dunk told News Corp family commitments were weighing heavily on any decision about his playing future.
"I had a fantastic time in Adelaide. I have a son who is five months old, so we have to weigh up what is best for us and my cricket," Dunk said.
The left-hander scored 364 runs at 52 in BBL|06 after being traded by the Hobart Hurricanes to Adelaide.
The Melbourne Renegades have also been the subject of speculation, with reports the Strikers were trying to lure South Australian batsman Callum Ferguson home, while former Australia pace bowler Peter Siddle is also said to be mulling offers.
An exit from the Renegades by Siddle would seriously dint their pace stocks with James Pattinson expected to feature in this summer's Ashes series, although the pace man suffered a setback on Saturday when he was withdrawn from the Bangladesh tour due to inflammation in his back.
Kane Richardson and Brad Hodge parted ways with the Strikers in the wake of BBL|06 and could also have new deals announced soon.
The Strikers would not confirm any new signings but it appears the floodgates are about to open.
"The Strikers policy is not to comment on contract negotiations before announcing. However following the in-principle signing of the MOU last week, we hope to be able to make some exciting announcements about our squad in the near future," a spokesperson said.
The Hobart Hurricanes are also understood to be close to announcing two new overseas signings with Kumar Sangakkara and Stuart Broad – who will feature in this summer's Ashes Test series - not returning for the Big Bash.
The Sydney Sixers will be looking for a replacement for long-time import Michael Lumb, who was forced into an immediate retirement with an ankle injury last month.