The excitement has reached its peak as the fourth edition of HBL Pakistan Super League (PSL) is set to enthrall the worldwide audience for over a month.
The HBL PSL 2019 will kick off with a sparkling Opening Ceremony at Dubai International Cricket in the United Arab Emirates (UAE) on Thursday night.
The PSL Opening Ceremony will begin at 09:00 pm PST. Pakistani renowned actor and singer Fawad Khan will sing the PSL 2019 Theme Song “Khel Deewano Ka” while Junoon Band, world-renowned Disco Band Boney M, Young Desi, Aima Baig and Shuja Haider will also rock the stage.
The internationally renowned pop star Pitbull also had to perform at HBL PSL 2019 Opening Ceremony; however, he made an excuse following a technical issue to his Dubai-bound plane.
Pakistan Super League 2019 is all set to begin today at Dubai with opening match between Islamabad United and Lahore Qalandars.#KhelDeewanoKa#PSLONHAI@thePSLt20@IsbUnited @lahoreqalandars pic.twitter.com/yJ3292P13z
— PTV Sports (@PTVSp0rts) February 14, 2019
The PSL Opening Ceremony will be followed by the inaugural T20 match between the Defending Champions Islamabad United and Lahore Qalandars. The first T20 of PSL 2019 will begin at 10:45 pm PST.
The two-time Champions Islamabad United has so far been the most successful team in PSL history. It won the title in 2016 and 2018.
In previous three PSL editions, Islamabad United played 32 T20s. With a 62.50 winning percentage, it won 20 matches and lost 12 out of a total of 32.
Led by Mohammad Sami, Islamabad United is featuring Luke Ronchi, Ian Bell, Cameron Delport, Wayne Parnell, Samit Patel, Philip Salt, and Zahir Khan as Overseas Players.
— Islamabad United (@IsbUnited) February 14, 2019
Besides Shadab Khan, Faheem Ashraf, Asif Ali, Rumman Raees, and Hussain Talat are among the squad members.
In complete contrast to Islamabad United, Lahore Qalandars is right at the bottom in terms of winning percentage. In all previous three editions of Pakistan Super League, Lahore Qalandars was ousted in the group stages and eventually it ended at the last position.
Having the lowest 30.76 winning percentage among all franchises, Lahore Qalandars secured just seven victories in its 26 T20s.
However for PSL 2019 edition, Lahore Qalandars has further empowered itself with the inclusion of AB de Villiers and Mohammad Hafeez as the Captain.
Apart from AB de Villiers, Corey Anderson, Carlos Brathwaite, Anton Devcich, Hardus Viljoen, David Wiese, David Wiese, Brendan Taylor, and Sandeep Lamichhane are also representing Lahore Qalandars this year.
Likewise players like Fakhar Zaman, Shaheen Shah Afridi, Haris Sohail, Yasir Shah, and Rahat Ali along with Mohammad Hafeez are also there to serve Lahore Qalandars.
The moment you all have been waiting for is finally here! 🤩
Lahore Qalandars will be facing @IsbUnited in the 1st match of #HBLPSL tonight at 10:45 pm!
#DamaDamMast #MainHoonQalandar #IUvLQ pic.twitter.com/88MSI0UFvA
— Lahore Qalandars (@lahoreqalandars) February 14, 2019
Interestingly despite being at the bottom, Lahore Qalandars’ record against top-placed Islamabad United isn’t that disappointing. Lahore Qalandars holds its second best winning percentage against Islamabad United after Multan Sultans.
Both have previously played six T20s against each other. In which, Lahore Qalandars won two, lost three while one match ended in a tie.