The seventh edition of Pakistan’s premier T20 competition – Pakistan Super League – will start on January 27, with the final scheduled for 27 February. The league, which has grown immensely in popularity over the years, was founded on 9 September 2015 with five teams by the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) but was later expanded to six teams. Each team plays the group stage matches in a double round-robin format. Four teams with the most points qualify for the playoffs, of which two contest the final.
With two trophies, Islamabad United are currently the most successful team in the PSL. They first won the inaugural edition of the tournament in 2016, followed by a second title in 2018. Both these titles came under the captaincy of one of the greatest cricketers to have emerged from Pakistan – Misbah Ul Haq. The current defending champions are Multan Sultans, who won the 2021 title. Let us have a look at the complete list of PSL winners from 2016 to 2021.
PSL Winners List and Runner Up List
|Year||Winner||Runner Up||Final Venue|
|2016||Islamabad United||Quetta Gladiators||Dubai International Cricket Stadium, Dubai|
|2017||Peshawar Zalmi||Quetta Gladiators||Gaddafi Stadium, Lahore|
|2018||Islamabad United||Peshawar Zalmi||National Stadium, Karachi|
|2019||Quetta Gladiators||Peshawar Zalmi||National Stadium, Karachi|
|2020||Karachi Kings||Lahore Qalandars||National Stadium, Karachi|
|2021||Multan Sultans||Peshawar Zalmi||Sheikh Zayed Cricket Stadium, Abu Dhabi|
1) PSL 2016 – Winner: Islamabad United | Runner Up: Quetta Gladiators
The 2016 PSL was the first season of the Pakistan T20 tournament that featured five teams and was held from 4 February 2016 to 23 February 2016 in the United Arab Emirates. Islamabad United finished third in the table after the league stage, with four wins and as many losses. The team, under the captaincy of Misbah Ul Haq, had a topsy-turvy journey during the league games, but remained unbeaten after that.
In Eliminator 1, United faced off against the Karachi Kings. They restricted the opponents to a total of just 111, after which they wrapped up the easy change in less than 15 overs, courtesy of an unbeaten 52 from Brad Haddin. United were next up against the Peshawar Zalmi in the Eliminator 2, which they won comprehensively. After winning the toss and electing to field, the Zalmi conceded 176 runs before being dismantled for 126 runs by the opponents. Islamabad’s Sharjeel Khan was named the Player of the Match for his knock of 117 which came off only 62 deliveries.
In the PSL final, United met the Quetta Gladiators at the Dubai International Cricket Stadium. After restricting the Gladiators to 174, United gunned down the target in 18.4 overs to become a PSL winner. Dwayne Smith was named the Player of the Match for scoring 73 off just 51 balls.
2) PSL 2017 – Winner: Peshawar Zalmi | Runner Up: Quetta Gladiators
The second edition of the PSL was played from 9 February – 5 March 2017. While all the games were played in the UAE, the final, contested by Peshawar Zalmi and Quetta Gladiators, was held in Gaddafi Stadium, Lahore.
After winning four of their 8 league games, the Zalmi, captained by Daren Sammy, finished first on the points table, thus getting two chances to make it to the finals. Zalmi squared off against Gladiators in the Qualifier, which they lost by just one run. Chasing 200, Zalmi managed 199 in 20 overs. They were next up against the Karachi Kings in the Eliminator 2, which they won by 24 runs. A century from Kamran Akmal helped the Zalmi post a target of 181, in response to which the King managed just 157.
The final was then set up between the Zalmi and Gladiators. Akmal’s 40 with the bat and three wickets by Riyad Emrit helped the Zalmi win the trophy by 58 runs. Chasing 148, the Gladiators were all out for just 90.
3) PSL 2018 – Winner: Islamabad United | Runner Up: Peshawar Zalmi
The third edition of the PSL was held from 22 February – 25 March 2018. That season, the tournament expanded to six teams, with Multan Sultans being the new addition. The group stage took place in the UAE, with two playoff matches played in Lahore and the final in Karachi.
After finishing right at the top of the points table, the United met Karachi Kings in the Qualifier, in which they won eight wickets. After restricting the Kings to a first innings total of 154, United wrapped up the game in only 12.3 overs. Luke Ronchi played a stellar knock – 94* off 39 to take the side to the final, where they faced off against the Zalmi. The United Pakistan Super League winners for the second time by beating the Zalmi by three wickets. Chasing 149, a quick half-century by Luke Ronchi took United to the trophy in 16.5 overs.
4) PSL 2019 – Winner: Quetta Gladiators | Runner Up: Peshawar Zalmi
PSL 4 was played from 14 February – 17 March 2019 and was co-hosted by UAE and Pakistan. Quetta Gladiators won their first title that year, after beating the Zalmi in the final. The Gladiators finished second in the table after the league stage, after which they met the Zalmi in the Qualifier game. A 71 off 43 from Shane Watson held the eventual winners post a target of 187, in chase of which the Zalmi could not go beyond 176.
The two teams met again in the final, with the Zalmi being on the losing side once again. The Darren Sammy-led side posted a mere 138 runs in the first innings, which was an easy chase for the Gladiators. An unbeaten half-century from Ahmed Shehzad took the side to the coveted silverware in 17.5 overs.
5) PSL 2020 – Winner: Karachi Kings | Runner Up: Lahore Qalandars
The 2019 – 2020 season was the fifth season of the PSL, which took place in two phases, after the tournament was suspended midway due to Covid19. While the tournament began on February 20, the playoffs were played in November when Covid19 saw a decline in the number of cases. Karachi Kings were the new champions that year.
Led by Imad Wasim, the Kings finished second in the table at the end of the league stage, after which they played the Qualifier game against Multan Sultans. Interestingly, the match was tied but the Kings were the Super Over and made it to the final, where they met Lahore Qalandars. Batting first, the first time finalists Qalandars managed only 134 in 20 overs, which the Kings chased down in 18.4 overs. Babar Azam scored an unbeaten 63 and was named the Player of the Match for the same.
At the end of the season, Azam was Kings’ highest run-scorer (473), while Mohammed Amir was the highest wicket-taker (10).
6) PSL 2021 – Winner: Multan Sultans | Runner Up: Peshawar Zalmi
The sixth edition of PSL was played in UAE and Pakistan from 20 February – 24 June 2021. Like in 2020, the tournament was played in two phases due to Covid19. Multan Sultans won their first title that season.
Led by Mohammed Rizwan, the Sultans finished second in the table after the culmination of the league stage and proceeded to play the Qualifier. In the Qualifier, they beat two-time champions United by 31 runs. Batting first, the Sultan posted a competitive target of 180 with the help of a half-century from Sohaib Maqsood. In reply, United managed only 149.
In the final, the Sultan met the Zalmi. Maqsood was once again the star performer with yet another half century which helped his side post 206 in the first innings. Despite a fighting knock from Shoaib Malik, the Zalmi could manage only 159.
Rizwan was the highest run-scorer for the Sultans that season (500), while Shahnawaz Dhani was the highest wicket-taker (20).