I.P.L. 2016: XI of the Season

After providing some non-stop cricketing entertainment for last two months, the 9th edition of Indian Premier League has come to its end with one of the underrated teams – SunRisers Hyderabad, led by a valiant David Warner, clinching the trophy yesterday midnight.

Let’s have a glimpse on the I.P.L. Season 9 Combined XI based on the best performances in all forms (Batting, Bowling, Fielding, Wicket-keeping, Captaincy) as displayed throughout the tournament:-

  1. DAVID WARNER (CAPTAIN) [SRH]
  2. VIRAT KOHLI (VICE-CAPTAIN) [RCB]
  3. AB DE VILLIERS [RCB]
  4. KRUNAL PANDYA [MI]
  5. DWAYNE SMITH [GL]
  6. NAMAN OJHA (WICKET-KEEPER) [SRH]
  7. ANDRE RUSSELL [KKR]
  8. YUZVENDRA CHAHAL [RCB]
  9. BHUVNESHWAR KUMAR [SRH]
  10. MUSTAFIZUR RAHMAN [SRH]
  11. DHAWAL KULKARNI [GL]

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                                   While Virat Kohli had been continuing his form of life into IPL as the Royal Challengers Bangalore Opening Batsman-cum-Skipper, David Warner surprised everyone as the captain of the champion team SunRisers Hyderabad, as throughout the season, he pulled his team scorecard through tremendous destructive consistent batting as an opener! The South African class batsman AB de Villiers chased the higher scores with sky-touching strike rate for the RCB. His 129 not out against the Gujarat Lions was the highest individual score this season.

Coming to the middle order, it’s the debutant elder brother of World T20 heartthrob Hardik Pandya – Krunal Pandya, who stole all the praises with his demolishing batting and part-time off-spin for the Mumbai Indians. Dwayne Smith – the Gujarat Lions opener who was pushed to no. 5 in the batting order during the later stage of the tournament, scored many runs at a huge strike rate, as well as, bowled some useful overs, even taking a 4/8 against Kolkata Knight Riders on a green Kanpur pitch! Naman Ojha of Sunrisers Hyderabad led the catching tally, and he had grabbed some spectacular unbelievable catches too. Andre Russell had been an inseparable part of the Kolkata Knight Riders squad, because be it death bowling or be it high required run rate, Russell solved numerous problems for KKR under massive pressure until he got injured.

Among the spinners, Yuzvendra Chahal of Royal Challengers Bangalore bowled good and is rewarded the opportunity to represent the national team soon in Zimbabwe. Dhawal Kulkarni showed his consistency over different surfaces all over India, taking 18 wickets for his team at a decent economy rate. The pacers squad for this IPL invented one and reinvented another as the best duo, that too from the champion team – Bhuvneshwar Kumar (the Purple Cap holder) and Mustafizur Rahman (Best Emerging Player of this season). Bhuvi too played one cameo innings of 21 off 7 balls which helped SRH clinch an important victory. Mustafizur had troubled some good batsmen with his controlled bowling, off-cutters and yorkers and took 17 wickets maintaining an economy of just 6.90.

Though they don’t feature in the best XI, Gautam Gambhir, Rohit Sharma, Ajinkya Rahane, Murali Vijay, Lokesh Rahul, Shane Watson, Mitchell McClenaghan, Adam Zampa and Chris Morris had a good IPL this year.

Resham Das

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