Despite not being able to take home the trophy during the last two seasons of Pakistan Super League (PSL), the Lahore Qalandars continue to be one of the most discussed franchises of the league, and the most favourite as well.
The team's mantra of being selfless and fearless has empowered players to go and express themselves without fearing the consequences of results and that’s what they have done in the last two seasons.
With the induction of some exceptional T20 players in the squad, the management Lahore Qalandars is confident of a better outcome in the third edition of the series next year.
Let's have a look at the top five players of Lahore Qalandars for PSL 3
The brilliant batsman from New Zealand has been retained as captain by the Lahore Qalandars for the third season of PSL and fans are hoping for some brutal batting from him. An electrifying batsman, Brendon McCullum has the ability to bat at any position and whenever the team needs him.
With 7 T20 centuries with two coming in international matches, Brendon poses a serious threat to bowlers of opposing teams.
The former Kiwi skipper is one of the most experienced players of the shortest format with around 300 T20 matches to his credit.
The 27-year-old Aussie batsman was the top pick for the team in this year’s draft. He is undoubtedly the most exciting and the most sought after T20 player at the moment. His inclusion gives Lahore Qalandars fans an opportunity to see their team getting some flying starts in the next season.
In 2015, Chris Lynn scored 101 off 51 deliveries against the Hobart Hurricanes to score his first T20 century, this year in IPL, playing for Kolkata Knight Riders, he hit a 19-ball 50 against Gujarat Lions, that innings included 8 sixes.
A shoulder injury following that match kept him out for a month but he came back strong with a 22 ball 50 against Royal Challengers Bangalore
He finished the IPL season with a staggering strike rate of over 180 and despite missing most of the season, was one of the most important players for the Kolkata Knight Riders.
Lynn is one player whom any franchise would have loved to pick and Lahore Qalandars did the right thing by opting for the Aussie batsman at the first opportunity.
Fakhar is one of the most loved Pakistani Cricketers these days after scoring a match-winning century against the India in the final of the ICC Champions Trophy earlier this year.
Known for his aggressive style of batting, local boy Fakhar will have heavy responsibilities on his shoulders to keep the batting momentum going.
He made his T20 debut in 2013, and scored a T20 century in 2015, an unbeaten 100 of 62 balls, helping his team Abbottabad chase 196 runs in 20 overs against Peshawar.
Since his debut, Fakhar has played 45 T20 matches and has scored 1,078 runs in 43 innings with an impressive strike rate of over 132.
Sunil Narine is one of the best spinners of the ball and can single-handedly bowl his team to victory. The 29-year-old cricketer from Trinidad is usually known for his bowling skills, but recently he has proved that he can smash the opposition with the bat.
Earlier this year, in IPL, Sunil Narine scored a half-century off 15 balls while opening the innings for Kolkata Knight Riders against Royal Challenger Bangalore with Chris Lynn. The duo of Lynn and Narine added 105 runs off 36 deliveries for KKR, the most by a team in power play overs in T20 Cricket. He is also considered the chief architect of KKR’s win in IPL 2012 and 2014.
Narine is one of only three bowlers with over 300 wickets in T20 Cricket, with the two others being DJ Bravo and Lasith Malinga. His career bowling economy rate 5.85 among the world's best.
With his impressive bowling stats and ability to surprise opponents with the bat, Sunil is surely going to be a player on which LQ team will be depending on.
Raza Hassan at 25 is still considered among the best talents Pakistan has produced during the last few years. He is making a comeback after serving a two-year ban for failing a dope test with the aim to reclaim his lost glory.
His ban expired earlier this year and he made an impressive comeback to domestic cricket this season taking 32 wickets in 11 games for National Bank of Pakistan.
Raza first came into limelight in 2011, when he was 18 and defended 16 runs in the super over leading Rawalpindi to the title win against Karachi. He was smashed for a six on the first ball but did not lose his nerve and conceded only one run of the last five deliveries.
Next year, he was included in Pakistan’s squad and was quickly noticed as a potential future weapon for the country.
In 2015, Raza tested positive for a banned substance which closed the door on him for two years. But, despite being away from all cricket facilities, he kept on working hard and looked promising in his comeback.
With his skills, he’s one of the players to watch for Lahore Qalandars in the upcoming season.