Chris Gayle
Chris Gayle is expected to put on a major show in the PSL.Reuters

The Pakistan Super League is expected to be a major T20 spectacle with top players from around the world set to ply their trade in the competition, which will start on February 4 in Dubai. Kevin Pietersen, Chris Gayle, Shane Watson, Kieron Pollard, Shaun Tait and Lasith Malinga are some of the international stars who are going to attract huge attention in the PSL.

Apart from these foreign players, Pakistan players are going to make the competition even bigger. Misbah-ul-Haq, Wahab Riaz, Sarfraz Ahmed, Umar Akmal and Shahid Afridi are few out of the many Pakistani cricketers who will battle it out for the prestigious PSL title.

The players have been divided into five teams, with 16 players in their core squad. Each team have around three to four players as supplementary picks as well. Peshawar Zalmi, Karachi Kings, Islamabad United, Quetta Gladiators and Lahore Qalandar are the five teams in the competition.

With such a rich-pool of international and foreign players, the Pakistan Super League is expected to entertain the crowd in the UAE, which will host the 19-day event. All the matches are set to be played at the Dubai International Cricket stadium and the Sharjah Cricket Association Stadium.

The Pakistan Cricket Baord were desperate to host matches in the UAE, which looked difficult at one point of time, but the PCB have been able to hold some important meetings to make UAE the official venue. Else, Doha in Qutar was ready to host the event.

A total of 20 matches shall be played in the lagues stage, which has been divided into three phases. The first and second phase matches shall be played in Dubai, while Sharjah will host the second phase. The finals and the playoffs will also be hosted by Dubai.

The Pakistan Super League, which may just be in its first edition, has major goals as they want it to become the second most powerful league in the world after the Indian Premier League.

League stages

First phase (All matches in Dubai)

February 4 – Islamabad vs Quetta (4pm GMT)

February 5 – Karachi vs Lahore (11am GMT)

Peshawar vs Islamabad (4pm GMT)

February 6 – Quetta vs Karachi (11am GMT) 

 Lahore vs Peshawar (4pm GMT)

February 7 – Islamabad vs Karachi (11am GMT)

Quetta vs Peshawar in Dubai (4pm GMT)

February 8 – Lahore vs Quetta in Dubai (4pm GMT)

Second phase (All matches in Sharjah)

February 10 – Islamabad vs Lahore (11am GMT)

February 11 – Karachi vs Peshawar (11am GMT)

Islamabad vs Quetta (4pm GMT)

February 12 – Karachi vs Lahore (11am GMT)

Peshawar vs Islamabad (4pm GMT)

February 13 – Quetta vs Karachi (11am GMT)

Lahore vs Peshawar (4pm GMT)

February 14 – Islamabad vs Karachi (11am GMT)

Quetta vs Peshawar (4pm GMT)

Third phase (Dubai)

February 16 – Lahore vs Quetta (11am GMT)

February 17 – Karachi vs Peshawar (11am GMT)

Islamabad vs Lahore (4pm GMT)

Playoff stages

February 19 – Playoff 1 [1st place vs 2nd place] in Dubai (4pm GMT)

February 20 – Playoff 2 [3rd place vs 4th place] in Dubai (4pm GMT)

February 21 – Playoff 3 [winner of playoff 2 vs loser of playoff 1] – Dubai (4pm GMT)

February 23 – Final [winner of playoff 1 vs winner of playoff 3] (4pm GMT)

TV listings:Ten Sports, PTV and Geo Super (Pakistan),  OSN (UAE), Prime TV (the UK)