The 51-day-long India’s T20 cricket carnival Indian Premier League (IPL) has reached its climax. Two-time champion Chennai Super Kings will take on IPL 2016 winner SunRisers Hyderabad on Sunday at the Wankhede stadium in Mumbai.
As we all know, cricket, especially T20 format, favours the batsman. And just like any other season of the cash-rich league, viewers once again witnessed some tremendous batting performances that have taken this league to a different level. Be it Mr 360 AB de Villiers creative shots selection or Kings XI Punjab’s opener Lokesh Rahul’s fastest fifty in KXIP’s opening game against Delhi Daredevils, the fans have witnessed it all.
Ahead of the much-awaited clash, here is the list of top five batsmen who have taken IPL 2018 by storm with their batting.
Kane Williamson -SunRisers Hyderabad (skipper)
SunRisers Hyderabad skipper Kane Williamson is our first pick for top five batsmen in the ongoing season of the Indian Premier League (IPL). Kane Williamson was named the skipper of Hyderabad just a few days before the start of the league after former Australia vice-captain David Warner stepped down as the captain of the team in the wake of the ball-tampering scandal. Williamson-led his squad from the front and guided them into the final of the league.
Williamson scored eight half-centuries in 16 matches for his team. He is also the current owner of the orange cap (688 runs) with an average of 52.9 and with a strike rate of 143.3. Williamson’s highest score in this season came against the strongest team Chennai Super Kings when his team needed it the most.
Williamson is also the only player in IPL 2018, who has notched up 8 fifty-plus scores. In his 16 innings, he has struck 59 fours and 26 sixes.
Interesting facts: Williamson has scored eight fifties in IPL so far – second joint most fifty-plus score by any player (Chris Gayle is another) in a single IPL season ever. Now, he is only behind RCB skipper Virat Kohli, who has scored nine 50-plus scores for Bangalore in IPL 2016.
Rishabh Pant – Delhi Daredevils (wicket-keeper batsman)
The young Indian wicket-keeper batsman Rishabh Pant has taken the 11th season of Indian Premier League to another level with his ability to strike the ball at will. However, Delhi is placed at the bottom of IPL point table with 9 losses to their name from 14 outings.
Pant stood out from Delhi squad because of his phenomenal batting performance. The 20-year-old cricketer is placed at the second spot in IPL table for most runs just behind Kane Williamson. Pant has scored 684 runs for his team in 11 games with an average of 52.61. Pant’s highest score (128, unbeaten) has come against the strongest bowling team SunRisers Hyderabad. Though Delhi lost the match, Pant won everyone’s heart with his performance. Pant’s 128 against SRH is also the highest ever individual score in the IPL. Rishabh went past Murali Vijay’s 127 to achieve this feat.
Interesting facts: In Delhi’s 14 matches, 8 times Rishabh Pant was the top run scorer – most for any batsman. Pant is also the only player to strike 100 boundaries (fours and sixes) in the IPL 2018.
Lokesh Rahul – Kings XI Punjab (Wicket-keeper batsman)
The 11th season of the Indian Premier League was the best edition for senior Indian opener and Kings XI Punjab’s wicket-keeper batsman Lokesh Rahul in terms of performance. Lokesh Rahul is our third pick for the top five performers in IPL 2018.
Kl Rahul has scored 659 runs for his team in 14 games with an average of 54.9. Rahul scored six fifties; struck 66 fours and 32 sixes . With the help of his performance, KL Rahul has also made his comeback in both, the ODI and T20I squads.
Interesting facts: Two times, KXIP’s wicket-keeper batsman Lokesh Rahul has ended on the losing side despite scoring 90+ runs.
Ambati Rayudu – Chennai Super Kings
Mahendra Singh Dhoni-led Chennai Super Kings have snatched Ambati Rayudu from Mumbai Indians in the much-talked-about Indian Premier League auction and it was one of the best decisions of the team. Rayudu has played many match-winning innings for CSK in the ongoing season of the T20 league.
So far, in IPL 2018, Rayudu has scored 586 runs from 15 matches with an average of 41.8, with a strike rate of 150 plus. Rayudu was also rewarded for his performance by getting recalled in the Indian team.
Rayudu has also scored his maiden IPL century this year against SunRisers Hyderabad and guided his team to eight-wicket victory over their Southern neighbours. Rayudu hit 52 fours and 33 sixes in IPL 2018.
Interesting facts: Ambati Rayudu has reached double figures in 13 innings – joint most by any player (KL Rahul) in IPL 2018.
Jos Buttler – Rajasthan Royals (Wicket-keeper batsman)
Jos Buttler, the man who single-handedily drove Rajasthan Royals up to the knockout stage of the Indian Premier League (IPL). He did not play for Rajasthan in their play-off game against Kolkata Knight Riders as he joined the England’s Test squad against Pakistan.
English cricketer and Rajasthan Royal’s wicket-keeper batsman Jos Buttler is our last pick.
Buttler scored 548 runs in 13 games that he played for Rajasthan with an average of 54.8. Buttler’s strike rate in IPL 2018 is 155.24. He struck 52 fours and 21 sixes.
Interesting facts: Jos Buttler has scored two unbeaten 90 plus runs — 95* against Chennai Super Kings and 94* against Mumbai Indians. He is the only player in IPL to narrowly missing the 100-run mark twice.