All set for the most anticipated tournament in the domestic calendar as HBL Pakistan Super League is going to start tomorrow, February 13, with Multan Sultans, the winners of the 2021 edition would clash with the defenders Lahore Qalandars at the Multan Cricket Stadium.
It is pertinent to mention that Karachi, Lahore and Rawalpindi would also host the matches of the 8th edition of PSL. Karachi’s National Bank Cricket Arena will host the second match of the tournament when the Karachi Kings will lock horns with Peshawar Zalmi.
Quetta Gladiators will begin their campaign in Multan on 15 February, whereas Islamabad United to play their first match on 16th February in Karachi.
Action will move to the northern half of the country from February 26 with Lahore and Rawal-pindi hosting the latter part of the tournament.
Lahore’s Gaddafi Stadium will host the four playoffs and the final. This would be in addition to five league games alongside Rawalpindi stadium, which will stage 11 matches.
The winner of the tournament will not only lift the Supernova Trophy but will also collect a cheque of Rs 120 million while the runners-up will receive a cheque of Rs 48 million.
Final will be played on March 19th. The HBL PSL was conceived with the idea of providing a platform to the young and emerging cricketers who can have a flavour of international cricket – by play-ing high-quality cricket under pressure environment –before graduating to the apex level.
The first-ever HBL PSL match in Pakistan – the final of the 2017 edition in Lahore – brought World XI for a three-match T20I series before Sri Lanka played a solitary T20I in Lahore.
The 2018 edition reopened the doors of interna-tional cricket for Karachi as the final between Is-lamabad United and Peshawar Zalmi, after the two playoffs in Lahore, was followed by the West Indies’ tour of the city for three T2oIs.
The 2019 edition, when Karachi hosted eight matches, further boosted the confidence of interna-tional sides, and the 2020 edition, the first time Pakistan hosted the tournament in its entirety, estab-lished Pakistan’s credentials as a destination that could host complete international tours.
All six franchises have won the HBL PSL title at least once, which underscores the quality of all six sides and the higher level of competition in the tournament. Islamabad United, the inaugural champions, was the only side to win the HBL PSL title twice (the second time in 2018).
Peshawar Zalmi won the 2017 edition. Quetta Gladiators, who were the finalists in the first two editions, won the 2019 competition. Karachi Kings were the first side to win to lift the trophy at their home when they defeated Lahore Qalandars in Karachi in 2020. Multan Sultans bagged their maiden title in 2021. Last year, Lahore Qalandars lifted the HBL PSL trophy in Lahore.
Before the HBL PSL 8 action kicks off, the Pakistan Cricket Board, in a continuation of its tra-dition, has lined up a glittering opening ceremony.
The cricket fans in Multan and all around the world will see spectacular performances by different artists and one of the major attractions would be the performances of the singers of the HBL PSL 8 an-them – Abdullah Siddiqui, Asim Azhar, Faris Shafi and Shae Gill.
The fans will also be treated to performances by the renowned music composer Sahir Ali Bagga and talented singer Aima Baig as the two add to the star-studded line-up, which will make the opening cere-mony an unforgettable experience, said a press re-lease issued here on Sunday.—APP