One of the most loved sports in this world is Cricket. Quoted as ‘a gentlemen’s game’, cricket is a sport that is widely loved and followed by fans all around the globe. The fans love supporting their countries in international tournaments and passionately follow them. Not just the international tournaments, but domestic league tournaments are followed a lot by the cricket fans as well. The concept of these domestic cricket leagues is somewhat the same as the football leagues. The teams are based on the districts in the countries, and foreign players are bought and sold. The only difference is that one player can play many different leagues in different countries. In football, a player can play only for one team in one league. There are many famous cricket leagues around the world. The article will cover almost all of those leagues, their winners, and the important statistics of the leagues.
Pakistan Super League
Starting with the Pakistan Premier League (PSL), it is a professional T20 cricket competition played by six teams representing six districts in Pakistan. The six teams that play PSL are Karachi Kings, Islamabad United, Lahore Qalandars, Quetta Gladiators, Peshawar Zalmi, and Multan Sultans. PSL was founded in 2015 when only 5 teams played in the competition. In the year 2017, Multan Sultans was added to the competition, making it a 6-team league.
Each team competes in a double round-robin style during the group stage; the top four teams with the highest points advance to the playoffs, eventually leading two teams towards the final. There are a total of seven seasons in PSL. The first season of PSL was played in 2016. The league stage standings were as follows: Peshawar Zalmi (1st), Quetta Gladiators (2nd), Islamabad United (3rd), and Karachi Kings (4th). As per rules, the top four teams qualified for the playoffs, while the fifth one, Lahore Qalandars got eliminated. Islamabad United won the tournament by winning both of the eliminators and then the final against Quetta Gladiators. The second season of PSL was held in 2017. The points table was as follows: Peshawar Zalmi (1st), Quetta Gladiators (2nd), Karachi Kings (3rd), and Islamabad United (4th). Lahore Qalandars got eliminated in the group stages for the second time in a row. The tournament was won by Peshawar Zalmi after defeating Karachi Kings in the second eliminator and Quetta Gladiators in the final.
The third season of PSL was the one that featured a sixth team, Multan Sultans. The league standings were: Islamabad United (1st), Karachi Kings (2nd), Peshawar Zalmi (3rd), and Quetta Gladiators (4th). Lahore Qalandars got eliminated in the group stage for the third time as Multan Sultans also failed to qualify in their debut season. Islamabad United went to winning the tournament for the second time, defeating Karachi Kings in the qualifier and Peshawar Zalmi in the final. The fourth season of PSL was played in 2019 when Peshawar Zalmi topped the group stage while Quetta Gladiators came second. Islamabad United was third and Karachi Kings secured the 4th position whereas the teams of Lahore and Multan got eliminated for the fourth and second consecutive time respectively. Quetta Gladiators won the fourth edition of PSL after defeating Peshawar two times: in the qualifier and the final. The fifth edition of PSL was played in 2020 in which the playoffs matches were postponed due to the COVID-19 pandemic. This was the first time that the league was played entirely in Pakistan. Multan Sultans topped the group stage as Karachi Kings secured the 2nd position. The two other teams which qualified were Lahore Qalandars (3rd) and Peshawar Zalmi (4th). Lahore and Multan qualified for the first time whereas Islamabad United and Quetta Gladiators got eliminated for the first time in the group stages. The tournament was won by Karachi Kings after they defeated Multan Sultans in the qualifier and Lahore Qalandars in the final.
In the year 2021, the sixth season of PSL was played. Originally planned to be the second season that will be played entirely in Pakistan, the matches were shifted to UAE due to COVID cases in Pakistan. Islamabad United claimed the first spot in the group stages while Multan Sultans was the runners-up. The third and fourth place was held by Peshawar Zalmi and Karachi Kings respectively. Karachi Kings got eliminated in the first eliminator of the playoffs as Multan Sultans qualified for the finals through the qualifier. In the second eliminator, Peshawar won against Islamabad and then lost against Multan Sultans in the finals as the Rizwan lifted the cup for the team of Multan for the first time.
The seventh and the latest edition of PSL was held in 2022. This was the second season that was held entirely in Pakistan. The matches were played in the National Stadium in Karachi and Gaddafi Stadium in Lahore. The league standings were as follows: Multan Sultans (1st), Lahore Qalandars (2nd), Peshawar Zalmi (3rd), and Islamabad United (4th). This was the first time when Karachi Kings was eliminated in the group stages after winning just 1 out of 10 games. The qualifier between Multan and Lahore was won by Multan as they advanced to a second consecutive final. On the other hand. The eliminator was won by Islamabad United as Peshawar Zalmi became the first team to be eliminated in the playoffs. The second eliminator was won by Lahore Qalandars against Islamabad as they advanced to their second final in three years. Lahore finally won their maiden PSL trophy against Multan after defeating them by 42 runs. The player of the tournament was given to Mohammad Rizwan – Multan (546 runs), the most runs were scored by Fakhar Zaman – Lahore (588), and the most wickets were taken by Shaheen Afridi – Lahore (20).
Indian Premier League
The Indian Premier League (IPL) is a professional men’s T20 cricket league in which 10 teams compete from ten different locations across India. IPL was founded in the years 2007 and 2008, the first edition of IPL took place. The IPL follows a league structure, in which, all teams play against each other twice (home and away). The top four teams qualify for the play-offs.
Over the years, the league has always been an 8-team league (except for the years 2011, 2012, and 2013). Even in the year 2022, there will be 10 teams competing against each other. In the past 15 years, a total of 15 teams have participated in IPL. The first season of IPL was won by Rajasthan Royals as they defeated Chennai Super Kings in the final. The second season was won by Deccan Chargers, who defeated Royal Challengers Bangalore in the final in 2009. Chennai Super Kings went on to win two consecutive finals in 2010 and 2011, defeating Mumbai Indians and Royals Challengers Bangalore respectively in the final. The fifth season saw Kolkata Knight Riders as the winners for the first time who defeated Chennai in the finals. Chennai went on to lose the final consecutively the next year again in 2013, losing to Mumbai Indians, handing them their first IPL title.
In 2014, Kolkata won again, beating Kings IX Punjab (known as Punjab Kings now) in the final while in 2015, it was Mumbai who defeated Chennai and achieved their second IPL title. Sunrisers Hyderabad got their first title in 2016 after defeating Bangalore in the final. The next year, Mumbai got their hands on the third IPL title as they faced Rising Pune Supergiant in the final. After 7 years, Chennai finally won in 2018, against Sunrisers Hyderabad. Mumbai Indians went winning two consecutive IPL titles in 2019 and 2020 against Chennai and Delhi Capitals (previously known as Delhi Daredevils) respectively. The current champions of IPL are Chennai as they won against Kolkata, back in 2021.
Other teams in IPL included Pune Warriors India/Sahara Pune Warriors, Kochi Tuskers Kerala, Gujarat Lions, and Rising Pune Supergiant. All of these teams no longer function now. On the other hand, Gujarat Titans and Lucknow Super Giants will be making their debut this season in 2022.
Bangladesh Premier League
The Bangladesh Premier League (BPL) is a professional men’s T20 cricket league in which 6 teams compete from six different locations across Bangladesh. BPL was founded in the year 2011 and 2012, and the first edition of BPL took place. The top four teams advance to the playoffs, a single-elimination game, and two qualifier games culminating in the Championship game, between the winner of Qualifier 1 and Qualifier 2.
In the year 2012, the first title was won by Dhaka Gladiators (currently known as Minister Dhaka) against Barisal Burners (currently known as Fortune Barishal). Dhaka went to win their second consecutive title in the season 2012-13 against Chittagong Kings (currently known as Chattogram Challengers). The third season took place in 2015-16 where the winners were Comilla Victorians, who won the final against Barisal Bulls (now Fortune Barisal). Dhaka won their third title Dhaka Dynamites (now Minister Dhaka) in 2016-17 against Rajshahi Kings (now Rajshahi Royals).
Rangpur Riders (later known as Rangpur Rangers) secured their maiden BPL title in the season of 2017-18 as they won their final against Dhaka. The following season, Comilla got their hands on their second title as they defeated Dhaka, which lost its second consecutive final. The season of 2019-20 was the one in which Rajshahi won their first title against Khulna Tigers. In the latest season of BPL (in 2021-22), Comilla got their third title as they were victorious against Fortune Barishal in the final.
Two teams in the BPL, Rajshahi Royals, and Rangpur Rangers, dissolved in the season 2019-20. Another team that plays the BPL but has never reached any final yet is Sylhet Sunrisers.
Big Bash League
The Big Bash League (BBL) is an Australian professional franchise T20 cricket league, which was established in 2011. The first season of BBL was played in the season 2011-12. The BBL features eight city-based franchises instead of the six state teams which had participated previously.
The first season of BBL was won by Sydney Sixers, as they won their final against Perth Scorchers. The second season of BBL was played in 2012-13, where Brisbane heat won their first title as Perth lost their second consecutive final. After losing two finals straight, Perth finally got their hands on their first BBL title as they defeated Hobart Hurricanes in the following season. The season of 2014-15 marked the second consecutive BBL title for Perth, where they were victorious over Sydney Sixers in the final. In the season 2015-16, Sydney Thunder won their first BBL title over Melbourne Stars. In 2016-17, Perth won their third BBL trophy as they defeated the first team who won the BBL trophy, Sydney Sixers.
The season of 2017-18 was important for Adelaide Strikers as they won their first-ever title beating Hobart Hurricanes in the final, which lost its second BBL final. The next season, Melbourne Renegades won their first-ever BBL trophy against city rivals, Melbourne Stars. In the next two seasons of 2019-20 and 2020-21, Sydney Sixers won consecutively as they overcame Melbourne Stars and Perth Scorchers in the finals respectively. The following season of BBL is the latest one, in which, Perth Scorchers came in as the better team against Sydney Sixers.
Champions League Twenty20
The Champions League T20, popularly known as the CLT20, was an annual international Twenty20 cricket competition that was played between the best domestic teams representing important cricketing countries against each other. The tournament began in 2008, with the inaugural edition taking place in 2009.
The direct entrants of the team were from IPL (3 teams), BBL (2 teams), Ram Slam – South Africa (2 teams), and Caribbean Premier League – West Indies (1 team). For the qualifying stage, there was one team each from HRV Cup (New Zealand), National T20 Cup – Pakistan, Sri Lanka Premier League (Sri Lanka), and IPL.
There have only been 7 editions of this league. The first edition was played in 2009, which was won by New South Wales Blues (Australia) as they defeated Trinidad and Tobago in the final. The following year, Chennai Super Kings won their first title as they defeated Warriors (South Africa) in the final. It was an Indian final in the year 2011, as Mumbai Indians took on Royals Challengers Bangalore and defeated them. In the year 2012, Sydney Sixers came out victorious against Lions from South Africa and got their first-ever CLT20 title. The following year marked Mumbai as the team with the most CLT20 titles as they won yet another Indian final against Rajasthan Royals. 2014 was the last year in which CLT20 took place. It was yet another Indian final between Chennai and Kolkata Knight Riders. Chennai overcame their country rivals and ended up being another team with the highest CLT20 trophies.