PSL 2018: Best XI from the tournament
Looking back at the best possible XI from the recently concluded PSL.
The Pakistan Super League (PSL) has become an important part of a cricketing calendar, especially for Pakistan. In this edition (third), there have been some brilliant performances both with the bat and ball. There were some agonizingly close encounters and more importantly for Pakistan cricket, there were 3 games held in Pakistan (Eliminator 1, Eliminator 2 and the Final).
In the all-important finals, Islamabad United emerged victorious by a margin of 3 wickets, despite a late fightback from Peshawar Zalmi.
Hence, as the tournament has come to an end, we look back at the best XI from the tournament.
#1 Kamran Akmal (Peshawar Zalmi)
For the second consecutive year, Kamran Akmal has been leading the batting charts in the PSL. After scoring 353 runs in the last season, Akmal bettered his record this time as he scored in excess of 400 runs this season.
But the wicket-keeper batsman has been brilliant in the tournament. He started the tournament with a duck, but soon found his touch as he struck a fine 53 and starred in Peshawar’s first win of the tournament. As the season went along, Akmal got better and better. He struck a superb 107 in 61 balls to drive Peshawar Zalmi into the play-offs. In the second Eliminator, Akmal hit a magnificent 27-ball 77 and helped his team qualify for the final. However, he failed to perform in the final as he was dismissed for just 1.
But, with 425 runs in 13 games, the senior Akmal was the second highest run-getter of the tournament. His strike-rate of 153.42 is also among the best in the tournament.
Innings – 12, Runs – 425, Average – 38.63, Strike-rate – 153.42, Highest – 107*
#2 Luke Ronchi (Islamabad United)
Luke Ronchi might have retired from international cricket but his hitting prowess hasn’t gone down. Opening the batting for Islamabad United, the New Zealand wicketkeeper has given his team some very good starts.
Even Ronchi began the tournament poorly. In his first four innings, he had two ducks and made only 46 runs (in 4 innings). But as the tournament went along, he became very consistent. He has scored 5 fifties in his last 7 innings and has not been dismissed for a single-digit score.
Overall in 11 innings, he has amassed 435 runs at an average of 43.50 and a staggering strike-rate of 182.00. His unbeaten innings of 94 in the Qualifier helped Islamabad get through to the final. In the title-clash, he scored 52 in just 26 balls to provide a perfect platform for Islamabad in their chase of 149. He was awarded the Player of the Match in the final and was also the Player of the Tournament.
Innings – 11, Runs – 435, Average – 43.50, Strike-rate – 182.00, Highest – 94*