Kohli among top batsmen likely to rule the roost at IPL - GulfToday

Kohli among top batsmen likely to rule the roost at IPL


Royal Challengers Bangalore's captain Virat Kohli (back) and AB de Villiers attend a practice session in Dubai. Courtesy: Twitter

Mohammad Abdullah, Staff Reporter


Batsmen will look to pander to the seemingly insatiable boundary lust of the fans once again as the cricketing biggest spectacle, Indian Premier League, gets under way in the UAE on Sept.19.


Crème de la crème of cricket from across the globe have descended on the UAE shores in a bid to leave an indelible impression at the cricketing extravaganza.


Gulf Today takes a look at seven batsmen, who are likely to rule the roost at the richest Twenty20 gala.


Glenn Maxwell


The Kings’ XI Punjab all-rounder will look to rekindle the same magic as that of 2014. He had a stellar season in 2014, when IPL was shifted to the UAE. Riding on his stellar form, Kings managed to win all their matches in the UAE.


Maxwell recorded the top three highest individual scores during the UAE leg matches, notching up 300 runs in five innings with a strike rate of more than 200.


He scored 95 runs off 43 balls during the matches against Chennai Super Kings (CSK) and Sun Risers Hyderabad (SRH) teams between which he also made 45-ball 89 against Rajasthan Royals.


Kings XI Punjab’s all-rounder has already heralded a warning to the bowlers with a match-winning knock against England in the ongoing ODI series in England. He smacked a 59-ball 77 to steer Australia to a fighting total of 294.


Virat Kohli


The Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) captain is one of the most dangerous batsman in the contemporary cricket across all the formats.


Kohli is the highest scorer in the IPL with more than five thousand runs under his belt at an average of 37.


He has smashed five centuries and 36 fifties at the richest league of the world. RCB fans will look forward to the Indian captain to end their trophy jinx, which has been eluding them for 12 years in row.


AB de Villiers


The swashbuckling RCB batsman is capable of tearing apart any bowling attack of the world in any condition on a given day.


The former South African batsman has scored more than 4000 runs at an average of 39.95 with three centuries and 36 fifties. He is likely to play a vital role in RCB’s maiden title push with skipper Kohli.


After taking the retirement from the international cricket De Villiers has shifted his focus to the T20 leagues around the world and that makes me even more lethal.


Rohit Sharma


The Mumbai Indian captain is one of the most destructive batsmen in the limited overs. He is only player to have scored three 200 plus scores in ODIs.


Rohit has already fetched titles for the reigning champions, who begin their campaign against CSK in opener on Sept.19.


He is at the third spot in all-time highest scorers’ list at the tournament with 4898 runs. He is renowned for giving a fiery start to his team and setting the tone for huge totals, under which the opponents often crumble like a stack of cards.


David Warner


The devastating Australian opener across all the formats captained SRH to their maiden tournament win in 2016.


He was the second-highest run-scorer for them in their title-winning effort with a monumental 848 runs at a strike rate of 151.42.


He had to skip 2018 season due to one-year international ban for his role in the sandpaper-gate row. But he made an emphatic return in the last season, scoring 692 runs in 12 matches. Warner will look to stamp his authority this year as well.


Chris Gayle


The West Indian is one of the most fearsome batsman and can blow away any attack irrespective of the opposition and conditions.


No other batsman has smashed more centuries than the Universe Boss at the IPL, with six hundreds under his belt. Gayle, who made a move to Kings XI Punjab in 2018, is likely to play the protagonist as Kings chart out new route to reach the elusive title. It might be his last chance to lay his hands on the IPL trophy. He is already 39.


MS Dhoni


Last but not the least, the most successful Indian captain ever is still a force to reckon with. The calmness and composure in his demeanor along with a sharp cricketing brain accounts for a lethal combination on the cricketing field and the glistening silverware in the trophy cabinets at CSK are a testimony to his extraordinary leadership skills. He is considered as the best finisher of the game.


Dhoni steered CSK to two titles in 2010 and 2011 with four runners-up finishes. After calling it a day for Team India few days ahead of IPL, Dhoni will be force majeure at the tournament.


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