Its a wrap! And how!
Milestone cricketing gala of IPL 2018 with Chennai Super Kings clinching their 3rd Indian Premier league title.
The eleventh edition of the Indian Premium League ended with Chennai Super Kings emerging as champions, by beating Hyderabad Sun-riser in IPL. The season was a true tale of David and Goliath – Mumbai Indians, last year champions, saw themselves ousted before semi-finals, while the Chennai team, celebrated a special win- returning to the game after serving a two years of suspension for the involvement of their owner in the 2013 IPL betting case. Its a wrap! And how!.
The final match seemed like a cakewalk for the south Indian franchise, thanks to Shane Watsons flawless inning. Watson stuck through the new ball swinging and seaming to score a mighty 117 runs not out in just 57 balls. Earlier, Hyderabad Sun-risers put on board a respectable target of 178. There goal of putting up a 200 run plus score was cut short by Agra-born medium pacer, Deepak Chahar who scalped 4 wickets.
Take it from the top
The league started 4 months ago on 27 January with the IPL auction at Bangalore where player were bid on by the 8 sporting franchises. The auction had it own thrills – while Ben Stokes and Jaydev Unadkat fetched high prices and broke auction records, being sold fo 12.5 and 11.5 crore respectively, seasoned players like Lasith Malinga remained unsold. Stokes, ended the season making merely 196 of 13 matches, averaging at a paltry 16.33. Udkat too found it hard justifying his high tag with being a low 29th rank in bowler tally with 11 wickets.
Rise of Rishabh Pant
The cricketing spectacle, marked the rise of Rishabh Pant. Averaging an impressive 52.61, the southpaw smashed a record breaking 128 not out this season. The young batsmen took the million rupee prize of emerging player of the season. Afghan national Rashid Khan impressed the crowds with his leg spins claiming 21 victims. Overall, Andrew Tye, and Kane Williamson emerged as the most successful bowler and batsman respectively.
Record breaking innings
Rishabh pant was not the only one breaking records. In-fact, the 2018 IPL can be remembered as milestone the number of new highs achieved this year. At just 17 years and 11 days Mujeeb-Ur Rahman of Kings XI Punjab becomes the youngest player to play the IPL match. For the veterans too there were new record – Virat Kohli became the first player to score 500+ runs in five different editions of IPL. Captain cool MS Dhoni too, took his record tally to 33 stumping in 175 IPL matches. True to the games format and his reputation, KL Rahul scored the fastest ever IPL half- century – completing his fifty in just 14 balls for Kings XI Punjab in a match against Delhi Daredevils.
Let’s look at the points table of the season.
|2.||Chennai Super Kings||14||9||5||0||18||0.253|
|3.||Kolkata Knight Riders||14||8||6||0||16||-0.070|
|6.||Royal Challengers Bangalore||14||6||8||0||12||0.129|
|7.||Kings XI Punjab||14||6||8||0||12||-0.502|
The season however was not without its controversies. On 9 March 2018, a First Information Report (FIR) was lodged against Mohammed Shami and his family members by his wife citing domestic violence and adultery. The Delhi Daredevil pacer, has recently joined the team under a “Right to match” where the delhi team matched the 3 crore bid by Hyderabad Sun-risers. The case is sub-judice where Shami was charged for attempted murder, rape and adultery along with allegations of match fixing against the bowler. Further, following ball tampering accusations against Steve Smith, Ajinkya Rahane was made Rajasthan Royals captain.
All in all- The Indian Premium League 2018 gave its viewers all they had hoped for – high octane cricketing competition, exceptional professionalism and sportsmanship, new high and just enough masala, to keep this big money ball rolling. The IPL over the years has grown exponentially– and its anybody’s guess what 2019 edition would be like. Could it very well be the redemption of Hyderabad Sun-riser and Mumbai Indians or will, Chennai retain its dominance?
As I leave you with this thought, a special hat tip to the Supernovas, who beat the Trailblazers in the Women’s T20 League in May, 2018. As a true-blue cricket lover, we wish the women’s league to get bigger and better, just as their male counterparts. Here’s hoping for what every sports fan wishes for – news and higher highs for the sports and all its players!
This is the IPL 2018 team signing off!