LAHORE: The final of second edition of Pakistan Super League (PSL2) 2017 will be played in Lahore, PSL chairman Najam Sethi announced on Wednesday while addressing the drafts ceremony in Dubai. Teams will fly in and fly out for the showpiece event in a sobering nod to the delicate security situation in the country. Drafts for the second season of the Pakistan Super League (PSL2) kicked off in Dubai Sports City, with the Lahore Qalandars choosing first. After a successful first edition of the PSL, the drafts process marked the beginning of PSL2.
Some 414 players were placed in the draft for the Pakistan Super League (PSL) on Wednesday, a list which included former New Zealand captain Brendon McCullum, West Indian stars Chris Gayle and Dwayne Bravo, Australia’s Shane Watson, Bangladesh’s Shakib Al Hasan and England’s Twenty20 captain Eoin Morgan. Former England batsman Kevin Pietersen will also take part, while the inclusion of Morgan is particularly noteworthy after he withdrew from England’s ongoing tour of Bangladesh over security concerns. Five teams took part in the inaugural edition of the PSL which was held entirely in Dubai and Sharjah in February this year. Sethi said top-level security would be put in place for the players. “International players know what we can do; most of them are ready to come to Pakistan and play. It will be a fly-in, fly out plan and the government has promised to give full security to the players. We are convinced that the final will happen in Lahore,” he said. Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) announced a profit of $2.6 million (Rs260 million) from the first edition.
Psl Round-1 Platinum:
The Lahore Qalandars picked ex-New Zealand captain Brendan McCullum in the first pick, as they had already announced him as captain of the team in place of Azhar Ali. In the second bid, Karachi Kings picked Chris Gayle. The star all rounder was earlier part of Lahore Qalandars in the first edition of PSL. Islamabad United, Peshawar Zalmi and Quetta Gladiators stuck with their earlier choices of platinum category players as they picked Misbahul Haq, Shahid Afridi and Kevin Pietersen respectively.
Psl Round-2 Platinum:
In the second round of drafts for the platinum category, Lahore Qalandars picked Sunil Narine while Karachi Kings settled for Kieronn Pollard. The man said to be behind England cricket’s resurgence in limited overs cricket, Eoin Morgan, joined Peshawar Zalmi. The runners-up team in the first edition Quetta Gladiators stuck with their earlier choice as they picked T20 captain Sarfraz Ahmed to lead the team. Shane Watson, who couldn’t complete the first edition due to an injury, rejoined Islamabad United.
Psl Round-3 Platinum:
Umer Akmal rejoined Lahore Qalandars while Shoaib Malik got picked by Karachi King. In the last round of platinum category Peshawar Zalmi picked Wahab Riaz, Quetta Gladiators chose Ahmad Shahzad while Islamabad United settled for Andre Russell.
Over four hundred foreign and national players will be divided into five categories. Platinum category includes 28 players, diamond category 33, gold category 74, silver category 255 and emerging category includes 24 players. In Platinum category, 9 Pakistani and 19 foreign players have been included.
No PCB politics in PSL:
Sethi said that the PSL would become a separate entity from next month onwards so that it remains free from Pakistan Cricket Board’s (PCB) politics. Sethi said the decision was made so that PSL could employ non-executive directors from outside the board. “PSL will be a separate company from next month onwards with majority of directors employed from outside the board,” he said. “And reason for this is to eliminate PCB’s politics from the league and attract more private sector participation.” The chairman also revealed that he would step down from his post in the near future. “The chairman of PSL will be an outside non-executive director as well,” he added.
Speaking of the PSL draft, Sethi said that the success of the league was apparent from the number of foreign players they had for the second season. “The success of PSL is exhibited from the star-studded cast we have this time around,” he said. However, he lamented that the franchises kept a higher retention – which will be reviewed next year. “Unfortunately, retentions were high this time around. Perhaps the franchises were thinking not many players would join – but they did. Nevertheless, we will review the retention policy for next time,” he added.
Sethi further said that he still hoped for the second season’s closing ceremony in Lahore, despite the opening scheduled in Dubai.