The Pakistan Super League first edition (2016) just recently ended in Dubai International Cricket Stadium. The tournament took place in the UAE, which has been the substitute home ground for Pakistan Cricket Team for more than half a decade. It has been a rollercoaster event with some breathtaking cricket due to exceptional performances, but it has also been a little more than that. Tripkar brings you a glimpse of everything that made Pakistan Super League everyone’s priority while it went on.
The Performances and Ambassadors
The official Ambassadors for Pakistan Super League were Ramiz Raja and Wasim Akram, while each team had their own ambassadors to cheer the players on as well. Pakistani celebrities like Sanam Saeed, Mohib Mirza, Ali Zafar as well as international star Sean Paul performed at the opening ceremony amidst the dazzling fireworks. The kick off to the tournament featured some amazing performances by the mascots of each of the five teams with the added bonus of the energetic Chris Gayle who put in a surprise performance of his own!
The Cultural Statement
All the commentators and presenters involved in the tournament were glad to wear Shalwar Kameez, the national dress of Pakistan. Local designers made striking wardrobes for all the announcers. Seeing the foreign and local faces dressed in the same clothes made the viewers swell with pride. This made cricket bigger than what it actually is, by carrying the culture of Pakistan and showcasing it to the world.
PSL saw a total of 209 sixes go over the boundary and 501 fours roll to it but this action wasn’t all there was. The spectators were thoroughly involved with the “Catch a Crore” offer by Pepsi. All they had to do was catch a ball from a six that came into the stands and they would receive a part of the prize. When the coaches and mentors got the best out of a tough match, they did their bit of celebration too. None celebrated more than the mentor of Quetta Gladiators, Sir Vivian Richards who in his own words felt that the team was like a family. The energy of a man his age was unbelievable and in this very short period all the viewers around the world fell in love with the legend for a whole new reason!
In the words of Intikhab Alam, Pakistan was a little late to the party of international cricket leagues. It was much needed to develop the Pakistani players and enable them to face the next evolution of cricket through high level of competing and performing. Moreover, a lot of companies showed their faith in Pakistan as an investor friendly nation as many big names came and eagerly participated in the activities of PSL. The experienced players like Kumar Sangakkara, Tamim Iqbal, Chris Gayle and Kevin Pietersen made it a learning experience for the emerging talents of Pakistan.
All in all, for a debut season it went as well as it could for Pakistan and we hope to see our favorite teams in action as soon as we can!