The 2020 edition of the Pakistan Super League, which began all the way back in February, finally came to a close on Tuesday evening.
Karachi Kings claimed their first PSL title as Babar Azam’s unbeaten 63 from 49 balls lifted them to a five-wicket win over Lahore Qalandars.
A number of England internationals featured in the four playoff matches played over the course of four days – here’s how they fared:
Alex Hales – Karachi Kings
22 (19) v Multan Sultans, Qualifier
11 (11) v Lahore Qalandars, final
Hales was somewhat unfortunate in both of his innings. After striking four boundaries on his way to 22 against Multan Sultans, he was dismissed after a rasping Babar drive down the ground was deflected onto the stumps at the non-striker’s end, catching him out of the crease. In the final he then got himself to 11 before Dilbar Hussain unleashed a vicious delivery that cut in and bowled him. Nonetheless, the Notts batsman – who averaged 60 in the first stage of the tournament earlier in the year – had cause for celebration as his side claimed their maiden PSL title.
Samit Patel – Lahore Qalandars
20 (17) & 0-29 v Peshawar Zalmi, Eliminator 1
26 (16) v Multan Sultans, Eliminator 2
5 (8) & 1-22 v Karachi Kings, Final
Patel played a key part in both of Lahore Qalandars’ wins: against Peshawar Zalmi he was tidy with the ball before offering up a valuable hand of 20 in a key partnership with Mohammad Hafeez; against Multan Sultans he hit a 16-ball 26 in an entertaining stand with David Wiese. He was tight with the ball in the final but, like the rest of his teammates, he couldn’t halt the Babar train.
Adam Lyth – Multan Sultans
9 (7) & 0-4 v Karachi Kings, Qualifier
50 (29) & 1-22 v Lahore Qalandars, Eliminator 2
Signed up as a replacement player, Lyth made his PSL debut in the playoffs and took the opportunity to show off the impressive game he’s built up in the T20 Blast over the last few years. While he fell for just nine in the Qualifier – he did have time for a whipping six off Mohammad Amir – the Yorkshire left-hander was the standout batsman for his side in the second Eliminator match, striking a 29-ball 50 as his teammates struggled to get going in what was ultimately an unsuccessful chase. His striking in the opening exchanges was brilliant to watch; at one stage a full-length Shaheen Afridi delivery angling in was somehow slapped behind point for four.
Lyth’s offies also got a go: he opened the bowling in both matches and took the wicket of Fakhar Zaman against the Qalandars.
Ravi Bopara – Multan Sultans
40 (31) v Karachi Kings, Qualifier
1 (2) v Lahore Qalandars, Eliminator 2
Bopara played some gorgeous strokes in his 31-ball 40 against Karachi Kings in the Qualifier, the lofted cover drives looking particularly sublime as he top-scored for his side. He then returned to the crease for the super over but couldn’t conjure up a victory in a chase of 14. Against the Qalandars he fell for 1 as the wheels began to come off the Sultans chase.
Saqib Mahmood – Peshawar Zalmi
3-41 v Lahore Qalandars, Eliminator 1
Playing in his first franchise match, Mahmood enjoyed an incredible start in the first Eliminator, taking two wickets in his first over. One more followed in his next but he suffered greatly at the death: figures of 2-0-13-3 turned into 4-0-41-3 as Patel and Hafeez lay into him.