LAHORE     -     The Pakistan Super League (PSL) will once again feature the best of Pakistan cricket talent as the new categories of local players, who took part in the PSL 2019 season, have been finalised.

Pakistan T20 captain Babar Azam heads the platinum category; teammates Shaheen Shah Afridi, Imad Wasim, Hasan Ali (leading wicket-taker in PSL 2019) and Shadab Khan have graduated to the platinum category for the PSL 2020 season. The completion of the renewal process has also kick-started the player recruitment process for the upcoming season (PSL 2020).

As part of the category renewal process, one representative from each of the six franchises voted for local player categories. Franchise representatives were not allowed to vote for their own players. Teams had a right to submit review requests at the end of this process. Head of Player Acquisition and Management Imran Ahmed Khan and National Selection Coordinator Nadeem Khan then reviewed the final list based on this process.

PCB Chief Executive Wasim Khan said: “With the completion of the category renewal process for the upcoming season of the PSL, we have reached an important milestone. These are exciting times as we move closer and closer towards the 2020 season which will be a truly historic one as all 34 matches will be played in Pakistan.

“The PSL has become one of the most sought after T20 leagues in the world, the next edition will be even bigger and better, I am sure league fans both in Pakistan and around the world will enjoy top-class cricket, with world-class facilities at the stadiums and top-quality broadcast once the tournament begins in February 2020,” he added.

Meanwhile, various factors such as PSL performances, national team performances, domestic performances and perceived T20 brand value were considered at length as part of the two-step player category renewal process. All those, who have donned the Pakistan colours, were assigned a base category of gold. According to this year’s draft rules, each team is allowed to retain up to eight players from last year’s roster.

The players, who are U23 but have been called up to the Pakistan squad before the category finalization process, cannot be a part of the emerging category. Additionally, U23 players cannot be part of a squad as an emerging player for more than two years unless they have played three or less matches in these two years.

Teams reserve the right to float relegation requests for the players before finalizing retentions. After relegation request is floated, all other teams shall be given a chance to meet the player’s base category. If no team matches the player’s base category, the player will be relegated to a category below his base category. Relegation requests may only be floated after obtaining consent from the player. The list of all local players who were not part of the HBL PSL 2019 will be released separately.