Ahead of the latest season of the IPL, we thought we’d stroll down memory lane and remember a few sides of old.
Deccan Chargers, Gujarat Lions, Kochi Tuskers Kerala, Rising Pune Supergiant and Pune Warriors were part of the IPL in previous editions and employed some star names, too. With that in mind, we’ve come up with a finely balanced XI of players who excelled in these teams.
Stats are from players’ performances at the named IPL sides in the IPL
Adam Gilchrist – Deccan Chargers (c) and (wk)
46 matches, 1,220 runs @ 27.11 | 25 catches, 13 stumpings
Gilchrist’s IPL journey began after his international career came to a close and yet he remained a star performer. In 2009, he captained the Chargers and led them to their only IPL title, finishing as the tournament’s leading run-scorer in the process.
Rohit Sharma – Deccan Chargers
45 matches, 1,170 runs @ 30.78
Before he became one of the leading men of an all-conquering Mumbai Indians side, Rohit made his name with Deccan – with both bat and ball. He finished as the Chargers’ second-highest run-scorer ever and even managed to collect a hat-trick against Mumbai in 2009 with his off-breaks.
Suresh Raina – Gujarat Lions
29 matches, 841 runs @ 33.64
Raina’s IPL legacy is largely based on his exploits with Chennai Super Kings, but during the side’s hiatus he stayed amongst the runs with Gujarat, finishing as the franchise’s leading run-scorer. He was the fifth-highest run-scorer in the 2017 tournament, with the four men above him striking at a slower rate than him.
Steve Smith – Pune Warriors & Rising Pune Supergiant/s
PW: 22 matches, 521 runs @ 40.07
RPS: 23 matches, 742 runs @ 39.33
Despite playing 50 matches for Rajasthan Royals, Smith’s finest work in the IPL has come with the two Pune franchises. After topping the Warriors’ batting averages in his two seasons with the side, he was influential in taking Supergiant to the IPL final in 2017, finishing as the fourth-highest run-scorer in the tournament.
Dwayne Smith – Deccan Chargers & Gujarat Lions
DC: 11 matches, 237 runs @ 23.70
GL: 24 matches, 563 runs @ 25.59
Another key member of the 2009 IPL-winning Deccan side. No one with as many runs had as high a strike rate as Smith that year (162.87), as he pulverised sides in the middle order. He performed solidly for Gujarat Lions, too, striking 563 runs across two seasons at an average of 25.59 at a strike rate just under 150.
Ben Stokes – Rising Pune Supergiant
12 matches, 316 runs @ 31.60 | 12 wickets @ 26.33
In his only season with Pune, Stokes was named the tournament MVP. His tally of 316 runs included a match-winning century against Gujarat Lions after coming in at 10-3, while he fared well with the ball, too, his best-haul that of 3-18 against Royal Challengers Bangalore.
Andrew Symonds – Deccan Chargers
28 matches, 839 runs @ 36.47 | 19 wickets @ 33.31
Another Chargers legend. After hitting a century in the inaugural edition of the IPL, Symonds was another key contributor to the 2009 title win. While averaging 35.57, he launched his runs at a sparkling strike rate of 150 and hit 33 off 21 balls in the final.
Dale Steyn – Deccan Chargers
24 matches, 32 wickets @ 18.25
Steyn has had his moments with RCB and Sunrisers Hyderabad, but his IPL peak came in 2011 and 2012 during his stint with the Chargers. He was particularly masterful against RCB in a 2012 fixture, returning stunning figures of 3-8 from four overs.
RP Singh – Rising Pune Supergiant, Kochi Tuskers Kerala & Deccan Chargers
DC: 42 matches, 51 wickets @ 24.09
KTK: 14 matches, 13 wickets @ 26.53
RPS: 4 matches, 3 wickets @ 37
The most prolific seam bowler in Deccan Chargers history, Singh joined Kochi Tuskers Kerala for their only season in the competition and topped their wicket-taking charts too. His spell with Rising Pune Supergiant in 2016 wasn’t a memorable one, but for his influence in helping the Chargers to an IPL title, he lands a place in this side.
Amit Mishra – Deccan Chargers
28 matches, 32 wickets @ 22.96
The leg-spinner holds the stunning record of having taken three IPL hat-tricks, with one of them coming for Deccan in 2011 against Kings XI Punjab. That was the year Mishra was at his best for Deccan, and perhaps the best he’s ever bowled in the IPL, with Ravichandran Ashwin the only spinner to take more wickets than him that year.
Pragyan Ojha – Deccan Chargers
54 matches, 60 wickets @ 22.13
Before claiming two title wins with Mumbai, Ojha rose to prominence with the Chargers, excelling under the leadership of Gilchrist. No-one played more games or took more wickets for the franchise than Ojha.
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