The 18th edition of the National T20 Cup is scheduled to start from Thursday at the Pindi Cricket Stadium, Rawalpindi. The marquee tournament will feature Pakistan’s leading cricket stars, including the likes of Babar Azam, Shaheen Shah Afridi, Shadab Khan, Fakhar Zaman, Hasan Ali and Imam-ul-Haq.
These international cricketers will be spread across six regional teams; Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (the defending champions), Northern, Central Punjab, South Punjab, Sindh, and Balochistan. These teams will be led by current white-ball cricket stars.
Most of the games in the National T20 Cup will be doubleheaders. The tournament will be played in two phases. The first leg of 18 matches will be played in Rawalpindi between September 23 and October 3. The second leg will be hosted in Gaddafi Stadium, Lahore from October 6 to 13.
The Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) recently release all the records created in the National T20 so far. With less than 24 hours to go in the star-studded tournament, let’s take a look at them.
Most wins in the National T20 Cup
According to the PCB website, Sialkot Stallions are the most successful team in the tournament. They have won the tournament on six occasions [twice in 2006, 2008, 2009, 2010 and 2011]. The Lahore region stands second with five wins. The Lahore Lions have won it thrice, Lahore Blues and Lahore Whites once each.
Following closely are Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KP). The defending champions have triumphed the tournament thrice. (Peshawar won the National T20 twice (in 2014 and 2015).
Most runs in the National T20 Cup
Khurram Manzoor of Sindh is the most successful batsman in the tournament so far. He has scored 2643 runs in the National T20 Cup. Khurram is also the only batsman with four centuries in National T20. He is followed by Kamran Akmal 2377, Shoaib Malik 2217, and Umar Amin 2047 runs.
Most wickets in the National T20 Cup
Former spin wizard, Saeed Ajmal, is the most prolific bowler in the National T20 Cup with 89 wickets. He was player of the match in 2005 when his three-wicket-haul helped Faisalabad Wolves’ win in the final against Karachi.
However, Ajmal has long bid adieu to the game. In his absence, two active players, Wahab Riaz (81 wickets) and Anwar Ali (79) may threaten his record in this edition.
Most sixes in the National T20 Cup
Sohaib Maqsood holds the record of most sixes in the National T20 Cup with 91 maximums under his belt. His blistering batting studded with 20 sixes last year helped Southern Punjab reach the final. The next best is Northern’s hard-hitting batsman Asif Ali who has hit 86 sixes. Both are within a good distance of becoming the first to 100 sixes in National T20.
Fastest centuries in the National T20 Cup
If anyone comes close to breaking Khushdil Shah’s fastest 100 recorded then we are in for a treat this time too. Last year, playing for Southern Punjab, Khushdil recorded a 100 off 35 balls against Sindh in Rawalpindi and broke Umar Akmal’s 43-ball hundred National T20 record. It was also the fastest 100 scored by any batsman from Pakistan in 20 overs cricket. Khushdil hit 25 sixes last year, the most by anyone in the 2020 edition.
Highest scores in the National T20 Cup
The only individual innings of 150 runs by a Pakistani batsman also came in this tournament when Kamran Akmal hit an unbeaten 150 for Lahore Whites against Islamabad in Rawalpindi in 2017. Twelve sixes in that innings is also a tournament record. The next two highest scores below to Mukhtar Ahmed – 123 for Sialkot in 2015 and 117 for FATA in 2017 (both against Karachi Whites). Each of the top three highest scores in NationalT20 has come at Pindi Cricket Stadium.