After many twists and turns, Mumbai Indians won their fifth title. While Mumbai Indians were consistency personified throughout the league stage, Delhi Capitals lost their way after a fine start and, in the end, huffed and puffed their way to the play-offs. However, they were defeated by MI in the finale.
During the course of the tournament, there were some fantastic performances from a number of talented cricketers. Somewhere on expected lines and a few were surprise packages. With the curtains coming down on an unpredictable IPL 2020, played amid the COVID-19 pandemic, Cricket Today brings for you the team of the tournament.
Openers: KL Rahul (captain) Shikhar Dhawan
Kings XI Punjab may have been knocked out of IPL 2020 in the league stage, but their opener and skipper was in prolific form throughout. In 14 matches, KL Rahul notched up 670 runs at a strike rate of 129.34 with five fifties and a record-breaking 132 not out. Rahul also gets the honour of leading the XI on the back of his batting might plus the fact that most other skippers, barring David Warner, had a rough time in IPL 2020.
Rahul’s opening partner would be Shikhar Dhawan amassed 618 runs in 17 matches at a strike rate of 144.73. The left-hander blazed his way to consecutive tons, a first in the IPL, and also has four fifties to his name to cover up for as many ducks. On days when he had his mind in the right place, Dhawan was unconquerable.
Middle order: Suryakumar Yadav, AB de Villiers (wk), Ishan Kishan
MI middle-order bat Suryakumar Yadav was a solid performer for Mumbai yet again. In 16 matches, he notched up 480 runs at an excellent strike rate of 145.01 with four fifties. Yadav guided Mumbai Indians home from tense situations more than once with his mature knocks, and can thus be termed Mr. Dependable of the team.
AB de Villiers played a couple of unbelievable knocks as only he can do. He blasted an unbeaten 55 from 24 in RCB’s incredible Super Over win against Mumbai Indians early in IPL 2020. His unbeaten 73 off 33 at Sharjah against KKR was a master-class in big-hitting on a surface where most other batsmen, including the accomplished Virat Kohli, struggled to get going. De Villiers was not done yet though as he stunned Rajasthan Royals by hitting Jaydev Unadkat for three consecutive sixes to take RCB to victory from a position of no hope. Incredible match-winner in every sense.
Following ABD at number five is a surprise entry. There was no doubt about Ishan Kishan’s talent. But, in IPL 2020, he transformed into a match-winner. Putting behind the disappointment of the heart-breaking loss to RCB despite scoring 99, Kishan rose to become a pillar of Mumbai’s batting. In the absence of Rohit Sharma, he was pushed up the order and succeeded there as well. With 516 runs in 14 matches at a strike rate of 145.76 with four fifties, IPL 2020 has the potential of being the watershed moment in Kishan’s career.
All-rounders: Marcus Stoinis, Rahul Tewatia
How RCB would be regretting releasing Marcus Stoinis! The Australian all-rounder has provided the much-needed X-factor to the Delhi Capitals line-up. Stoinis proved his value to the franchise in the team’s first match itself, smashing a brutal 53 from 21 and claiming 2 for 29 in DC’s incredible Super Over win over KXIP. He kept contributing right through with both bat and ball, none more significantly than in Qualifier 2 against SRH. Promoted to open the batting, Stoinis hit a fluent 38 from 27 and then grabbed 3 for 26 to end SRH’s title hopes.
Rahul Tewatia had to make this list on the basis of his incredible all-round efforts. Who can ever forget the five sixes against Sheldon Cottrell that saw RR achieve a seemingly impossible record chase? To prove that his knock against KXIP wasn’t a fluke, Tewatia took on the might of Rashid Khan against SRH and lifted RR to another fantastic win with an unbeaten 45 from 28. With his canny leg-spin, he also claimed 10 wickets to make him a valuable asset to the team.
Bowlers: Rashid Khan, Kagiso Rabada, Mohammad Shami, Jasprit Bumrah
Even as SRH missed out on making another final, leg-spinner Rashid Khan kept his reputation intact with another excellent season. In 16 matches, he claimed 20 wickets at a strike rate of 19.20 and an unimaginable economy rate of 5.37. With his prodigious talent, he spun a web around a number of illustrious batsmen.
Kagiso Rabada finds his name in the bowlers’ list following yet another stupendous show for Delhi Capitals. In 17 matches, he captured 30 wickets at a strike rate of 13.01, making up for his slightly expensive economy rate of 8.34. On days when he got his yorker right, he was unplayable.
MI pace spearhead Jasprit Bumrah will be the leader of this attack as well. Like the last few years, Bumrah has been the standout performer for Mumbai this season as well. Every time Mumbai were in desperate need of a breakthrough, they turned to Bumrah, and he delivered on most occasions. In 15 matches, he claimed 27 wickets at a strike rate of 13.13 and an economy of 6.73.
KXIP’s experienced pacer Mohammed Shami completes the playing eleven. Bringing his versatility into play, Shami captured 20 wickets in 14 games at a strike rate of 16.10 and an economy rate of 8.57. Shami constantly got the early breakthroughs for Punjab. He was expensive towards the death in the first few games, but once he got his yorkers right was lethal towards the end as well. His Super Over against Mumbai, featuring pin-point yorkers, was undoubtedly the greatest over of IPL 2020.