HBL PSL 2020 will be held entirely in Pakistan
Quetta Gladiators will kick-start the 2020 edition of the Pakistan Super League as the defending champion after defeating Peshwar Zalmi in the final. And according to Pakistan Prime Minister, Imran Khan, it has been announced that the entire PSL will be played in Pakistan next time, which will come as huge news for all Pakistan cricket fans.
According to sources, Lahore and Karachi will be two of the host cities for the fifth PSL season with other cities who have expressed a desire to host the tournament include Multan, Islamabad, Peshawar, Rawalpindi and Quetta.
The 2019 edition of the Pakistan Super League was played from February 14, 2019, and eight of the matches were played in Pakistan. The last eight games of the 2019 PSL were played in Pakistan, including the final which was played in Karachi like last season.
PCB had intended to hold three matches in Lahore while Karachi was to host five matches including the season finale but all matches that were to be played in Pakistan were later shifted to Karachi.
What happened in the Earlier Seasons
In the fourth season of the Pakistan Super League which was played in 2019, Quetta Gladiators won the title by defeating Peshawar Zalmi in the final. This was after both, the Gladiators and Zalmis finished in the top two of the points table with 14 points from 10 games.
The other two teams that qualified for the playoffs where Islamabad United and Karachi Kings, finishing third and fourth with five wins each. Multan Sultans failed to make the playoffs along with the perennial bottom-perchers, Lahore Qalandars who finished sixth yet again.
In the playoffs, Quetta defeated Peshawar in the first Qualifier by 10 runs thanks to a Shane Watson’s 71 to reach the final. Islamabad United overcame Karachi Kings to knock them out of the competition before a Kamran Akmal 74 ended the United hopes in the second Qualifier.
The final saw the Zalmis struggle to make a mere 138/8 from their 20 overs which the Gladiators chased down in 17.5 overs for the loss of two wickets only.
The third edition of the HBL PSL concluded on the 25th of March and was yet another successful season. The final was held in Karachi while two games during the playoffs were played in Lahore. We had six teams, 34 matches and 3 matches in Pakistan with 2 taking place in Lahore and 1 match played at Karachi.
In what came across as a surprising move, the Peshawar Zalmi captain Darren Sammy won the toss and decided to bat first. With chasing being a much easier task, the move backfired when the side managed to score just 148/9 from their 20 overs against a batting line-up that had shown considerable strength in the competition.
And that’s exactly how things turned out. Luke Ronchi continued with his impressive form and scored another half-century as the Islamabad United romped to their second title with more than three overs to spare.
First-timers Multan Sultans and Lahore Qalandars were knocked out of the tournament in the first round itself.
The second edition of the HBL PSL was won by Peshawar Zalmi. In what turned out to be a one-sided final, the Peshawar Zalmi defeated the Quetta Gladiators in the title-decider to lift the trophy. Darren Sammy hammered a quick-fire 28 down the order to become the difference between a score of 125 and 148 and on that slow and sluggish surface, the Gladiators were able to manage just 90 in reply. Mohammad Asghar grabbed three wickets while Hasan Ali and Wahab Riaz scalped two apiece.
The HBL PSL cricket league has put the cricket action from the country back on the map. Boasting of international players and a league like format, the tournament took place in three stages, which was played in Dubai, Sharjah and Pakistan. The teams representing 6 major cities – Peshawar, Quetta, Islamabad, Karachi, Lahore and Multan will take part in the competition.