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Half these experts believe Lahore Qalandars could win PSL 2019. What do you think?

Reps from Geo, ARY, Express and other networks say who would win, who would almost win and who'd remain winless.
Updated Feb 17, 2019 09:53am

Who are sports journalists rooting for, and whom do they think will take home the Pakistan Super League 2019 trophy? Read on to find out their predictions.

Read: Find out how accurate our 2018 panel was

Who are you rooting for?

Karachi Kings. I've spent 24 of my 28 years on this planet in Karachi, so it kind of feels like home now.

Who do you think will actually win PSL 4, and why?

Karachi Kings, because every supporter is sure his team will win. On a serious note, their lack of power-hitters may once again come back to haunt them and that Islamabad United side does look pretty ominous.

Lahore Qalandars too won’t be the mugs they have been so far and may well be the tournament’s dark horses.

Who will finish last and why?

Karachi Kings, because every supporter is sure his team will finish last. On a serious note, Multan Sultans seem to be the team with the most question marks around them and may well struggle in their second season.

Who will score the most runs in the tournament?

Fakhar Zaman. Where else will he vent all that pent-up frustration from his poor South Africa tour? Or maybe Babar Azam. Where else will he use all that confidence from his superb South Africa tour?

Name your pick for the highest wicket-taker.

Shaheen Shah Afridi. He’s too inexperienced to not be targeted by the batsmen and he is too good to not take wickets when he is.

Name one player who you think will surprise everyone.

Misbahul Haq, he’s only 44. I also expect some bowlers to emerge as a breath of fresh air, mainly because it is Pakistan and they are bowlers.

Name one player who will be the biggest letdown.

PSL 4 may well experience some sort of changing of the guards, and it wouldn’t be surprising if last year’s two top-scorers, Luke Ronchi and Kamran Akmal, as well as the top two wicket-takers, Wahab Riaz and Faheem Ashraf, all struggle to maintain their performances with bat and ball respectively.

Make a random PSL prediction (could be anything).

I’ll make two. The first is that fans of every city (barring the champions) will claim that this isn’t just a victory for the victorious team but for all of Pakistan. The second is that most of my predictions will be wrong.


Who are you rooting for?

Being a Karachiite, I will be rooting for my city's team, Karachi Kings. Just imagine, if the Kings win the title at the National Stadium in front of the home crowd, what amazing scenes would those be!

Who do you think will actually win PSL 4, and why?

I feel Quetta Gladiators have got a good chance this time around. They have been quite consistent and have a balanced squad. The addition of Sunil Narine and Sohail Tanvir especially will strengthen their bowling, which was considered to be their weaker aspect.

Who will finish last and why?

I just hope it is not Lahore Qalandars. I want to see Rana sahab dancing and celebrating more. Multan Sultans are going through a revamp and I fear that could effect their performance.

Who will score the most runs in the tournament?

Seeing the way Babar Azam has been playing, especially in the T20s, he is probably the strongest candidate to be the highest scorer in PSL 2019.

Name your pick for the highest wicket-taker.

I will go with Shadab Khan.

Name one player who you think will surprise everyone.

I have seen a bit of this young pacer named Muhammad Musa. He was Islamabad United's emerging category pick and could be someone to watch out for, provided that he gets an opportunity.

Name one player who will be the biggest letdown.

Well, it is harsh to say this about any player, but I am afraid AB de Villiers may not live up to his reputation.

Make a random PSL prediction (could be anything).

I expect something special from Umar Akmal. He's a player of extremes as in he's either flop or top. He's done the former. He must also be aware that Pakistan need a finisher and he can be the solution, so he may want to audition for that.


Who are you rooting for?

Karachi Kings, obviously. I live and work in this city!

Who do you think will actually win PSL 4, and why?

Lahore Qalandars, because for one, they have AB de Villiers, and two, they surely must be fed up of finishing at the bottom.

Who will finish last and why?

Multan Sultans because they have already been through a lot in during their short time in the league. Their rebirth and the stress associated with it could count against them.

Who will score the most runs in the tournament?

Some foreign player, not a Pakistani one, of that I'm sure. My money would be on Luke Ronchi, especially after what he did last year. He is for United what Mohamed Salah is for Liverpool: red kit, little talk, all magic.

Name your pick for the highest wicket-taker.

Wahab Riaz, but only if he wears that Mitchell Johnson-esque moustache again. And if not him, then some random foreigner. Don’t care about them; too patriotic to support anyone else.

Name one player who you think will surprise everyone.

Sahibzada Farhan, for his ability to mix big shots with classy strokes.

Name one player who will be the biggest letdown.

Sarfraz Ahmed. He is not a power hitter but this format requires batters to be one. He is also under pressure, not as much as he was before the captaincy presser but still. I feel the beginning of the end of the Sarfraz chapter has begun.

Make a random PSL prediction (could be anything).

Hasan Ali will take a hat trick.

Read: 5 improvements Pakistan Super League 2019 could use


Who are you rooting for?

Multan Sultans because they have my favourite Pakistani duo of Shoaib Malik and Shahid Afridi.

Who do you think will actually win PSL 4, and why?

Multan Sultans! This time they’ve got the majority of the bases covered. They have an abundance of experienced all-rounders such as Andre Russell, Shahid Afridi and Shoaib Malik; their balance look really good on paper.

Who will finish last and why?

Karachi Kings. I think they are a top-heavy side in the batting department and will struggle in the later stages of the innings, which could eventually cost them big.

Who will score the most runs in the tournament?

Babar Azam. He is just class apart and for me the best player in the world in T20 format.

Name your pick for the highest wicket-taker.

It won’t be Mohammad Amir, of that I'm sure. My pick is going to be Wahab Riaz. He is hungry and had an amazing time in the Bangladesh Premier League. Plus, he is the quickest bowler in the tournament.

Name one player who you think will surprise everyone.

Qais Ahmed from Multan Sultans. The 18-year-old was picked by the franchise in Gold category and is rated very highly in cricketing circles.

Name one player who will be the biggest letdown.

This is easy: Mohammad Amir. His confidence is low and I think he is going to struggle, big time.

Make a random PSL prediction (could be anything).

Lahore Qalandars will make the playoffs this season.


Who are you rooting for?

Quetta Gladiators! They give their all every single time, fighting to the very last minute. They have been super consistent throughout and truly deserve to lift the trophy. Fingers crossed.

Who do you think will actually win PSL 4, and why?

Karachi Kings have a pretty good chance this time. They’ve got Babar Azam, who we all know is in destructive form; he’s the number one T20 batsman. Colin Munro is there too, and he’s the second best T20 batsman in the world. They’ve also got Imad Wasim, who is in great form, with both bat and ball.

Who will finish last and why?

Hopefully not Lahore Qalandars! They do amazing work for development of cricket in the country, and I’m hoping they put up a better performance this time around.

Who will score the most runs in the tournament?

My bet is on AB de Villiers, Luke Ronchi and Babar Azam. Ronchi single-handedly won Islamabad matches last year, whereas for de Villiers, might I say more?

Name your pick for the highest wicket-taker.

The incredibly talented 18-year-old boy named Shaheen Shah Afridi.

Name one player who you think will surprise everyone.

Saad Ali. He's had a great domestic T20 season and must be hungry to perform for Lahore Qalandars and earn his national cap.

Name one player who will be the biggest letdown.

I can’t really say. T20 is full of surprises. Some of the biggest names fail spectacularly sometimes, while sometimes the underdogs rise to the occasion and become match-winners. You just never know!

Make a random PSL prediction (could be anything).

How about a Karachi vs Lahore final? Deep down we all want that to happen.


Who are you rooting for?

For this league to grow further, people have to start supporting their local teams. On that principle alone, I'm rooting for Karachi. I'm not too crazy about the franchise ownership but since they carry my city's name, my allegiance lies with the Kings.

Who do you think will actually win PSL 4, and why?

Call me crazy ... but Lahore Qalandars! Yes, I'm backing the three-time laughing stocks to become the first-time champions. What fuels my almost brash optimism? Their off-season business. Their problem's always been batting and AB de Villiers, Mohammad Hafeez and Corey Anderson plug those very gaps. Not to mention that they've also cut the cancerous Umar Akmal lose.

Who will finish last and why?

There seems to be a consensus here, and with good reason. Multan Sultans may turn out to be Naya Pakistan's most favourite team but on paper they're — i'm afraid — pretty ordinary. Their two best batters are Shoaib Malik and Shahid Afridi whose combined age is a staggering 75.

They've got some decent pacers but the rest of their roster boasts little-known foreign talent or format misfits such as Shan Masood and Hammad Azam. Say hello to the new Qalandars!

Who will score the most runs in the tournament?

I want to go with Fakhar Zaman but will go with Babar Azam — another consensus pick. Both come in really early and both are brilliant at what they do, only Babar is more suited to last the entire 20 overs. In this one year he's also improved his acceleration which was a concern earlier. You know what, it will be a bigger surprise if he is not the top scorer in PSL 4.

Name your pick for the highest wicket-taker.

On quality alone I would've picked Junaid Khan because to me he's Pakistan's best pacer when fully fit. But I can't back him here as I'm backing his team to finish bottom, which means lesser matches and thus lesser wickets. Since I have Lahore winning it all, I'll go with Shaheen Shah Afridi.

Name one player who you think will surprise everyone.

Our very own "talented youngster" ... Umar Akmal. Because one man's trash is another man's treasure. It's very easy to hate him but it's also very difficult to ignore that he did possess a very real skill-set. He's left Lahore in a divorce which I believe would suit both the parties. Now with Quetta and away from the circus, he would want to prove a point.

Name one player who will be the biggest letdown.

Mohammad Sami. Islamabad United have made him the captain for a lack of a better option but I'm sorry he just doesn't seem captaincy material. He'll find Misbah a hard act to follow.

Make a random PSL prediction (could be anything).

The prime minister would personally get involved so fewer international players would refuse to travel to Pakistan. The government would take credit because Naya Pakistan, the opposition wouldn't acknowledge because Purana Pakistan.

The parliament would roar with PSL-centric jibes, with treasury benches boasting "dekho De Villiers bhi a rha hai" and opposition benches countering: "Kohli tau nahe a rha na!"

Could happen.

Do you agree with the predictions? Let us know in the comments section! You can also post predictions of your own. If you outdo the experts, we might give you a shout-out in our post-tournament wrap-up!