Jadeja and Curran have both been striking at over 200 in IPL 2021. © BCCI/IPL
In this weekly feature, we bring you all the key talking points from the bygone week of IPL. In this part, we look at how CSK has successfully adopted the MI model for success from last season and what makes AB de Villiers a freak.
You can find the first part of the series here.
Chennai Super Kings implementing the Mumbai Indians blueprint for success
Mumbai Indians campaign in the previous season saw unprecedented domination by a team in 13 seasons of IPL. The blueprint of their success was fast bowlers denting the opposition with wickets with the new ball and their middle muscle of Pollard and Pandya dominating the death overs by hitting more boundaries than any other side. The slow turner at Chepauk made the stroke play difficult for Mumbai’s hitters this time around while the conditions offered little assistance for the new ball to deviate laterally.
One team which made most of the conditions have been CSK, playing their first leg of five games at the original home ground of MI at the Wankhede. CSK have successfully implemented Mumbai’s outline for success from last season this time around. CSK pacers have taken 13 wickets in six games in the Powerplay overs at a better average and strike rate than all other teams. Incidentally, MI occupy the bottom of the table which they dominated last season with a solitary new ball wicket for their pacers in six matches.
Fast bowlers in Powerplay in IPL 2021
Chennai’s new-ball pairing of Deepak Chahar and Sam Curran have shared 11 wickets between them in 31 of the 36 overs bowled by the entire CSK team in the competition so far. Trent Boult, who equalled the record for most Powerplay wickets in a season last year (16 wickets), have picked the solitary wicket for MI this season when he dismissed Rajat Patidar in the second to last ball of the Powerplay in the opening fixture of the season and MI pacers have failed to add to the tally since.
The other area where CSK have dominated is death overs hitting with their run rate of 12.12 in the last five overs is nearly 2.5 runs per over ahead of the tournament average. The southpaw duo of Ravindra Jadeja and Sam Curran have been largely responsible for this with both scoring at over a strike rate of 200. In the match against RCB at Wankhede, Jadeja equalled the IPL record for most runs in an over when he smashed 37 runs (including a no-ball) from the Purple Cap holder Harshal Patel’s final over of the innings. Just like the Powerplay bowling chart for pacers, MI occupy the bottom end of this table as well.
Teams in death overs (16-20) this IPL
SunRisers Hyderabad shuffle and ruffle
SRH started off the season with five Play-Offs qualifications on the bounce in the last five editions and as a genuine title contender thanks to the schedule where they were to play nine games in helpful tracks of Chepauk and Kotla. Things haven’t gone as per plan for the southern franchise with their worst start to an IPL season – just a solitary win in the first six games.
From their starting XI, only four players have featured in all six games – skipper David Warner, Jonny Bairstow, Rashid Khan, and Vijay Shankar. SRH have used 21 players in all out of their squad of 25 – the most by any team this season and the joint-most by SRH in any of the previous seasons. SRH’s Indian contingent – apart from Manish Pandey with the bat in couple of games – have failed to deliver leaving their overseas players to do the heavy lifting.
The overseas trio of Warner, Bairstow and Williamson have done the bulk of the scoring for SRH in the six games so far and SRH are the only team where the contribution of overseas batters in top seven has outscored their Indian counterparts in a 2:1 ratio.
Percentage of runs scored by Indian and overseas batsmen in top seven. (CSK dot is superimposed by RCB). ©Cricbuzz
AB de Villiers’ seamless adaption to a new role
T20 cricket has been a format that gets tougher as one gets older. AB de Villiers, who has often made people drop jaws during the peak of his career, still has fuel left in the tank when it comes to the best franchise T20 tournament in the world – the IPL. He retired from international cricket in mid-2018 and ever since has appeared sporadically in T20 leagues across the world. The lack of regular top-flight competition and interval between playing days meant oppositions found a chink in his armour against spinners who can turn the ball away from him. In the last three seasons of IPL, he strikes at under 125 against leg spinners and left-arm orthodox (compared to an overall SR of 162) and has been dismissed rather frequently. In IPL 2021 too he has been dismissed by spinners thrice in 53 balls while no pacer has dismissed him yet and he has scored at almost two runs per ball against them.
With Devdutt Padikkal rise in the ranks in the last 18 months and the latest addition of Glenn Maxwell to the RCB roster with the omnipresent Virat Kohli also in there meant De Villiers rediscovering himself as a specialist death overs hitter – a phase where he largely has to face only fast bowlers. De Villiers hasn’t batted in the top three positions in the last two years (between 2015-19, he batted in the top three slots in 73% of the innings) and has settled in at a new role at #5 this season – a position where he batted just once in the last five seasons.
In the last three seasons combined, 50% of De Villiers’ runs have come in the final five overs and he has the highest strike rate in this phase among all batsmen.
De Villiers increasing runs % in death overs in IPL
|2||RCB||Nadeem, Holder||Nabi, S Sharma|
|3||MI||Virat, Abhishek, Mujeeb, Khaleel||Saha, Nadeem, Holder, Natarajan|
|4||PBKS||Williamson, Kaul, Kedar||Mujeeb, Manish, Samad|
|6||CSK||Manish, S Sharma||Virat, Abhishek|
Batsmen struggle in the end overs at Chepauk
MI skipper Rohit Sharma looked visibly elated looking at the track at Kotla ahead of his team’s sixth game after completing the Chennai odyssey. Chepauk has proved to be a tough venue for batsman in the recent times batsmen (unless your name in AB de Villiers) have found the going extremely tough at the fag end of the innings.
In the ten games at Chepauk 65 wickets fell in the final five overs of an innings compared to 66 in the other 15 overs of an innings. A wicket fell every 8.8 balls in the death overs in Chennai games with teams scoring at just under 8.50 runs per over compared to ten and above at other venues. (In two innings here, De Villiers hit 99 runs at a SR of 247.50!).
The batting fraternity would be happy that the games of Chennai leg has concluded, and teams are moving to greener pastures of Eden Gardens and Chinnaswamy Stadium for the second half of the season.
Death overs stats at each venue in this IPL
|Year||Inngs||Runs||Death overs runs %||Death Overs SR|
* All stats updated till PBKS vs RCB match on 30 Apr 2021.