Matches (11)
T20 World Cup (2)
County DIV1 (5)
County DIV2 (4)

In the PSL, age is just a number

T20 icons, old warhorses and emerging superstars - all feature in ESPNcricinfo's team of the tournament

Sreshth Shah
Sreshth Shah
Luke Ronchi smashed the fastest fifty of the PSL, Islamabad United v Karachi Kings, qualifier, PSL 2018, Dubai, March 18, 2018

Luke Ronchi smashed the fastest fifty of the PSL  •  PCB/PSL

Players from four franchises make up ESPNcricinfo's team of the tournament, with six of them representing one side. Did your favourite player make the cut?
1. Luke Ronchi - Islamabad United
(runs: 435, strike-rate: 182, fifties: 5)
Making his PSL debut, Luke Ronchi smashed five half-centuries in record time - his slowest fifty came at a strike-rate of 185, his fastest broke the then PSL record. Ronchi's big-hitting scintillated crowds in Sharjah and Dubai, but he backed it up in Pakistan too. His 26-ball 52 in the final earned Ronchi a Man-of-the-Match award and sealed his Man-of-the-Series crown.
2. Kamran Akmal - Peshawar Zalmi
(runs: 425, strike-rate: 153.42, fifties: 4, hundreds: 1)
Despite three ducks, Kamran Akmal finished as the tournament's second-highest run-getter, only ten short of Ronchi's tally of 435. That only displays how the rest of his season went. Kamran smashed five fifty-plus scores at crucial stages and wrote his name in PSL's record books by scoring the first and only hundred of PSL 2018 in a must-win game against Lahore Qalandars and topping that off with another brutal 77 in another do-or-die match - the qualifier against Karachi Kings. Kamran spoke to ESPNcricinfo last week, saying his hunger has returned after being dropped by the Pakistan national team. This time, we're inclined to believe him.
3. Shane Watson - Quetta Gladiators
(runs: 319, strike-rate: 135.16, wickets:11, economy: 7.66)
The 36-year-old carried his form from the Big Bash League into the PSL. For Quetta, he was the anchor at the top that allowed the rest to break free. Watson's 66 against Lahore set the tone for Quetta's season, while his unbeaten 90 against Karachi all-but-secured Quetta's spot in the PSL qualifier. Watson also chipped in with the ball, taking 11 wickets with a best of 3 for 22 in Quetta's tournament opener. Watson finished as the tournament's fifth-highest run-scorer.
4. Hussain Talat - Islamabad United
(runs: 201, strike-rate: 131.37, wickets: 4)
In a top-heavy Islamabad side, it was always going to be difficult for their middle- and lower-order batsmen to find batting time, but Talat grasped every opportunity he got. He rescued Islamabad against Multan Sultans to make an unbeaten 48* in a low-scoring thriller. He remained not out four of the ten times he batted and scored at a brisk strike-rate of 131. His 2 for 17 in the PSL final, too, ensured Peshawar struggled in the middle overs. The youngster from Shahdara hopes to become a "prominent name" in Pakistan cricket, and his 2018 campaign has put him in the fast lane towards that goal.
5. Asif Ali - Islamabad United
(runs: 213, strike-rate: 169.04, balls-per-boundary: 4.3)
Asif Ali will, perhaps, be remembered as the man whose three consecutive sixes sealed Islamabad's win in the PSL final. That, however, would do gross injustice to a man who has maximised whatever little opportunity he got with the bat. Asif scored at a strike-rate of almost 170 and found the boundary at will. Twenty-nine of the 126 balls he faced went to the fence - a whopping rate of 4.3 balls per boundary. Along with the 6-ball 26 (strike-rate of 433!) in the PSL final, Asif's 24-ball 45 against Peshawar turned out to be another memorable knock. If there's one player that's raised his hand for a spot in the national team this season, it's Asif.
6. Darren Sammy - Peshawar Zalmi (strike-rate: 182.75, balls-per-boundary: 3.34)
Darren Sammy's calming influence did wonders for the 2018 runners-up, guiding Peshawar through four must-win matches to make the PSL final. Sammy struggled with multiple injuries - once a hamstring, another time his back - but the St Lucian came through when needed. His 4-ball 16, a ridiculous innings where Sammy hobbled his way to seal Peshawar's improbable win, will end up as one of PSL 2018's greatest moments. And when Sammy didn't bat, his tactics came to the fore. His decision to bowl out Hasan Ali and Wahab Riaz before the 20th over was a masterstroke in the qualifier against Quetta. Liam Dawson went for 23 off the last over, but Peshawar still won by a solitary run.
7. Samit Patel - Islamabad United
(wickets: 13, economy: 6.96, average: 14.46)
The experienced left-arm spinner from England was handed the new ball for Islamabad this season, often bowling the bulk of his overs inside the Powerplay. That makes his economy of 6.96 remarkable, and his bowling strike-rate of 12.4 even more sensational. Patel's 4 for 34 against Peshawar was his standout performance with the ball in a season where Islamabad's batting-order provided little opportunity for the big-hitting Patel to free his arms.
8. Shadab Khan - Islamabad United
(wickets: 9, economy: 6.54)
It takes two to tango, and Shadab Khan complemented Patel expertly. Batsmen found it difficult to negotiate Shadab's variations, and his dot-balls allowed the other Islamabad bowlers to take the wickets. Shadab's wickets have dried up over the past two seasons, but his economy of 6.54 has made him a T20 mainstay. Shadab's a big-match player, and that was proved in the PSL final as well - his three wickets made him the final's most successful bowler.
9. Wahab Riaz - Peshawar Zalmi
(wickets: 18, economy: 6.90, average: 19.11)
Wahab Riaz has always been a wicket-taking bowler, but what surprised many was his frugal economy in 2018. Going at just 6.90 per over as a Powerplay and death-overs bowler, Wahab's dominance with the ball was one of the primary reasons why Peshawar made the PSL final. His 14-ball 28 in the final also showed that Wahab has the potential to be a long-handle wielding phenom. He finished as the tournament's joint-highest wicket-taker with 18 scalps.
10. Mohammad Sami - Islamabad United
(wickets: 13, economy: 6.82)
Given the pace that Mohammad Sami generated this year, few would believe that he turned 37 at the start of the season. His short ball, the one that skids through faster than you think, hurt the opposition on numerous occasions as they top-edged or sliced many a time while his variations at the death made Sami a difficult bowler to score off. His economy of 6.82 meant he was one of Islamabad's stars this season.
11. Shaheen Afridi - Lahore Qalandars
(wickets: 7, average: 28.14)
For young Shaheen Afridi, a strong PSL season was important after a promising campaign at the 2018 U-19 World Cup in January. And that's exactly what happened for the 17-year-old pacer from Khyber Agency who took the new ball for Qalandars. Despite a forgettable season for the franchise, Shaheen's performance was one bright spot for Lahore. There was no lack of effort from Shaheen this season, and despite a couple of expensive spells, his astounding return of 5 for 4 against Multan goes down as the best bowling effort in PSL history.

Sreshth Shah is a sub-editor at ESPNcricinfo