Well what a few days of fascinating T20 cricket in the UAE with the inaugural Pakistan Super League. The competition has attracted T20 talent from around the world, followed by the world’s media.
It doesn’t really matter who wins the prize, what is important is that the PSL is happening and domestic Pakistani cricketers have the chance to rub shoulders with the world’s best. The international stars include Chris Gayle, Shane Watson, Kevin Pietersen, Dwayne Bravo and Darren Sammy to name a few.
It proves that the world of cricket respects Pakistan and wishes to support them in restructuring their playing opportunities.
The tournament has attracted a huge amount of interest from the international Pakistani diaspora. Millions of Pakistanis across Europe and North America will be rooting for their regional teams.
The five teams include Lahore Qalandars led by Azhar Ali, Islamabad United led by Misbah ul Haq, Peshawar Zalmi led by Shahid Afridi, Quetta Gladiators led by Sarfraz Ahmed and Karachi Kings led by Shoaib Malik.
After Quetta Gladiators beat the strong Peshawar Zalmi team by 3 wickets, they now stand unbeaten and lead the table at present.
My personal highlight of the tournament so far was Mohammad Amir’s hat trick for Karachi Kings against Lahore Qalandars.
PSL Top Batsmen
Luke Wright 149 runs (Highest score of the tournament 86)
Tamim Iqbal 120 runs
Ahmed Shehzad 98 runs
PSL Top Bowlers
Mohammad Nawaz 8 wickets (Best bowling 4/13)
Mohammad Asghar 6 wickets
Wahab Riaz 6 wickets
Certainly it is clear to see that the ‘feel good’ factor has returned to the whole of Pakistan. The competition has brought the elite and celebrities to the UAE to watch their heroes.
It has given the whole nation a much needed confidence boost towards positivity.
If India can pull off the IPL surely Pakistan can be just as good. Pakistan historically has always been able to produce the natural talent to compete with the world’s best even with a struggling domestic structure and little finances.
The established Pakistani players will have a chance to sharpen their skills. For the youngsters and new comers it will give an opportunity to showcase their skills and attract the attention of the national selectors.
The PSL final is scheduled for Tuesday 23rd February, 8pm local time.
All in all the PSL is a win win situation for Pakistan.
Who needs to watch or play in the IPL anymore?