- Mumbai Indians secured a record 5th title
- Chennai Super Kings failed to reach the playoffs
- Delhi Capitals finally broke the jinx
- Bottom-team Rajasthan Royals’ player won the MVP award
IPL 2020 may appear to be one of the most competitive IPL seasons of all time, but truth be told, it was the most one-sided tournament ever and was the story of Mumbai Indians’ dominance. MI were light years ahead of the competition and the season was their domination and the struggle of 7 other inconsistent teams to be the second-best.
Mumbai Indians’ domination
No other team came close enough to pose a threat to Mumbai’s glorious campaign and they rightfully won the title for a record 5th time and became only the second team after Chennai Super Kings to defend their crown. It was a season that saw Delhi Capitals make it to their maiden IPL final whereas CSK failed to advance to the play-offs for the first time in the history of the league.
The shortest format of the game is widely deemed as the batsman’s game but IPL 2020 yet again proved that good batsmen win you matches but good bowlers win you tournaments. The entire season was heavily dominated by high profile pacers – most notably Jasprit Bumrah, Trent Boult, Kagiso Rabada, Anrich Nortje, Jofra Archer and Mohammad Shami- who shared a total of 144 wickets among them. All of season’s top 4 highest wicket-takers played the final. Jofra Archer was named the Most Valuable Player of the Year, even though Rajasthan Royals failed to qualify to the play-offs. Kagiso Rabada finished the season with 30 wickets in 17 games and was the purple cap holder.
Among the batsmen, it was KL Rahul that had a prolific run with the bat for KXIP, scoring the season’s highest 670 runs in 14 innings and his tally of runs in the last three seasons now read 659, 593 and 670. Shikhar Dhawan, who had not scored a single IPL century coming into the tournament, became the first cricketer in the history of IPL to score two consecutive centuries. His total of 618 runs was only second to KL Rahul. Suryakumar Yadav, once again emerged as one of MI’s most consistent and reliable batsman for the third consecutive season scoring 480 runs in 15 innings.
While this year’s IPL saw some top guns failing to live up to their names, it also saw a number of young rising stars who proved that they were capable of punching way above their weight.
Devdutt Padikkal – Featuring in just his first-ever IPL season, the 20-year old left-hander had a stellar run for RCB, stepping up to the role of a reliable opener. He finished the season with 473 runs in 15 games and was RCB’s leading run-scorer this year – a record that Virat Kohli had held for the past 4 seasons. He was also named the Emerging Player of the Season and showed great promise for the years to come.
Ishan Kishan – It was in this edition of IPL that Ishan Kishan came of age and announced himself to the world scoring 516 runs in 14 games. He was the leading run-scorer for Mumbai Indians, who boast of having some of the worlds’ best batsmen in their rank. He hit a total of 30 sixes, which was also the highest this season and his average of 57.33 is the highest by any batsman who played more than seven matches.
T Natarajan – T. Natrajan’s consistent yorkers were a revelation for SRH as he bowled the season highest of 71 yorkers giving away just 57 runs and picking up 5 wickets in them. He was the second highest wicket-taker for Sunrisers, picking up 16 wickets in as many games.
Rahul Tewatia – Tewatia’s heroics against Kings XI Punjab was probably the highlight of IPL 2020 and will be etched in the memories of everyone who witnessed it for a long time to come He consistently delivered with both the bat and the ball and was the only Indian player to finish the season with over 200 runs and 10 wickets to his name. In a squad that was filled with big international names, he proved out to be one of Rajasthan’s most reliable match winners.
Glenn Maxwell – Maxwell had been underperforming for quite some time now but this season was the worst of all as he failed to hit even a single six in the 11 innings he played in the tournament. He scored only 108 runs at a below par strike rate 0f 101.88 this season. His form was one of the major reasons for KXIP’s poor run this season.
MS Dhoni – Mahendra Singh Dhoni had a forgetful run this season- both, with the bat and as a captain. Under his leadership, CSK failed to qualify to the play-offs for the first time in the history of IPL. He looked extremely rusty with the bat and his inability to pace the innings well proved to be fatal for CSK on multiple occasions. He managed to score just 200 runs in 14 games at a poor strike rate of just 116.27. For the first time in 13 years, Dhoni failed to score a single half-century in the tournament.
Andre Russell – Andre Russell hadn’t been 100% fit and missed out on a few of KKR’s matches but even in the matched that he did play, the 2019’s Most Valuable Player misfired with the bat scoring just 117 runs in 10 matches at a poor average of 13.00. Even Pat Cummins had more runs than him at the end of the season.
Rishabh Pant – The 2018’s Emerging Player of the Year, failed to impress with the bat and his only half-century for Delhi Capitals came in the final. Barring that game, he failed to do anything substantial with the bat and scored 343 runs in 14 games at a very poor strike rate of 113.95.
The third edition of Jio’s Women T20 Challenge saw a new winner as Smriti Mandhana-led Trailblazers lifted the trophy for the very first time, defeating the two-time champions, Harmanpreet Kaur’s Supernovas. Sri Lanka’s T20I captain, who represented Supernovas, was the highest run-scorer this season and finished with 117 runs in 3 games. Radha Yadhav became the first player to pick a 5-wicket haul in the history of the tournament and finished with the season’s highest tally of 8 wickets.