As we continue to look reflect on IPL 2020, here’s our very own domestic team of the tournament, celebrating the Indian stars who thrived in the UAE bubble.
Mayank Agarwal – Kings XI Punjab
11 matches, 424 runs @ 38.54, SR: 156.45
The India Test opener cracked the IPL code in 2020, going big and quick at the top of the order for Kings XI Punjab. Agarwal’s 50-ball 106 against Rajasthan Royals faded from the limelight in the aftermath of Rahul Tewatia’s incredible comeback innings, but it remains a staggering knock. While his partner-in-crime, KL Rahul, took the Orange Cap, Agarwal’s strike rate was noticeably greater (156.45 v 129.34).
Shikhar Dhawan – Delhi Capitals
17 matches, 618 runs @ 44.14, SR: 144.73
Ignore the four ducks and focus on when he got himself in – because the leftie didn’t waste those starts. Dhawan was Delhi Capitals’ standout batsman in their best-ever IPL season, finishing as the tournament’s second-highest run-scorer. He hit his finest groove in the middle of October, when scores of 69 not out and 67 were followed by back-to-back unbeaten centuries. A phenomenal achievement.
KL Rahul (wk) – Kings XI Punjab
14 matches, 670 runs @ 55.83, SR: 129.34
KL Rahul’s strike rate invited justified criticism and proved costly at points for Kings XI Punjab, but at the end of the day you have to give kudos to the consistency of runs, across matches and seasons; Rahul was third on the run-scorers list in 2018, second in 2019 and finally top this year.
Suryakumar Yadav – Mumbai Indians
16 matches. 480 runs @ 40, SR: 145.01
Mumbai’s uncapped batting star was a key cog in a winning machine, classily putting together his finest IPL season yet. His 43-ball 79* against Royal Challengers Bangalore was a particularly enthralling watch, each gap pierced with the quality of a star who could hold his own in international waters.
Ishan Kishan – Mumbai Indians
14 matches, 516 runs @ 57.33, SR: 145.76
A breakout star, Kishan starred in the middle order and up top in the absence of Rohit Sharma, finishing as the top run-scorer for the side that won the whole thing. He was ice cool when the pressure was on, hitting 55 not out in the Qualifier and an unbeaten 33 in the final.
Hardik Pandya – Mumbai Indians
14 matches, 281 runs @ 35.12, SR: 178.98
On his day, there isn’t a better ball-striker to watch, a sense of languid power emanating from each hit that flies over the rope. Pandya faced just 157 balls in the tournament – and hit 25 of them for six.
Rahul Tewatia –Rajasthan Royals
14 matches, 255 runs @ 42.50, SR: 139.34 | 10 wickets @ 32.60, ER: 7.08
Tewatia had 20 IPL appearances since his 2014 debut leading into this season; few had heard of the name. And then came his remarkable half-century against Kings XI Punjab, where he went from 17 off 23 to 53 off 31, dispatching Sheldon Cottrell for five sixes in an over. It was the highlight of a strong all-round campaign in a faltering side, with Tewatia finishing second on both Rajasthan’s batting and bowling average lists.
Mohammed Shami – Kings XI Punjab
14 matches, 20 wickets @ 23, ER: 8.57
Shami was the leading force in the Kings XI Punjab attack and predictably at the heart of their winning streak in the second half of the season, taking 10 wickets in their five-win run and bowling an incredible five-run super over in the dramatic win over Mumbai Indians.
Jasprit Bumrah – Mumbai Indians
15 matches, 27 wickets @ 14.96, ER: 6.73
Mumbai’s death-bowling genius has long terrorised batsmen in the IPL, but even by his standards, this was a standout season. He took his first-ever IPL four-for in a rampant win over Rajasthan Royals and then returned career-best figures of 4-14 in the Qualifier win over Delhi. Twenty wickets in 2017 was his previous highest IPL return – and how he blew it away in 2020.
Sandeep Sharma – Sunrisers Hyderabad
13 matches, 14 wickets @ 26.71, ER: 7.19
One of the less-heralded names on this teamsheet, Sandeep Sharma was a key part of Sunrisers Hyderabad’s journey to the playoffs, taking big wickets in the powerplay; in one three-game stretch, Sharma accounted for the wickets of Dhawan, Virat Kohli and Rohit Sharma, all three departing cheaply in the opening proceedings.
Yuzvendra Chahal – Royal Challengers Bangalore
15 matches, 21 wickets @ 19.28, ER: 7.08
India’s prime one-day leggie remains Kohli’s go-to man in the IPL; he was the most prolific spinner in the competition and RCB’s leading wicket-taker for the fourth time in six seasons.