The next T20 World Cup is only a year away and much of the focus of this year’s IPL was on building an India squad with youngsters who can deliver in the shortest format.
Here’s a look at some of the important moments of IPL 2023:
The selectors’ silent message that they are looking for a young and exuberant side for the next T20 World Cup may not work for Virat Kohli. He opened the innings with Faf du Plessis and totalled 639 runs at a strike-rate of 139.82 in 14 games. Most impressive was the way he found the gaps and stuck to cricketing shots.
With 890 runs at a strike-rate of 158.70 in 17 matches, Shubman Gill has emerged as the highest run-getter in this IPL. With sublime footwork, he has been an exhibition of poise and grace. With three centuries he has stamped his class as an all-format player. His flamboyant aggression has been best exemplified in his improved strike-rate.
Having been voted as Emerging Player of IPL 2023, Yashasvi Jaiswal set the record for the most runs by an uncapped player — 625 at a strike-rate of 163.61. His clear thinking was visible during his 98 not out off 49 balls at Eden Gardens.
Five consecutive sixes off the final over from Yash Dayal which gave KKR an improbable victory against Gujarat Titans provided Rinku Singh with instant stardom. The Uttar Pradesh batter continued demolishing the bowlers as KKR found a ‘finisher’ in him.
Mumbai Indians have unearthed another gem in promising Tilak Varma. With 343 runs at a strike-rate of 164.11, the lefthander showed that he is cut out for the big league. His blistering knock of 84 off 46 balls against RCB and 43 off 14 in Qualifier II earned him a lot of praise. He can innovate, which is most important in this format.
Having watched Sai Sudharsan in the TNPL, Ravichandran Ashwin had been very impressed and had termed him as “special” in 2021. A year later the Titans bought him at his base price of Rs 20 lakh which is less than his contract at TNPL (21.60 lakh). The lefthander’s 96 off 47 balls in the final proved his talent.
Mohit Sharma. PTI picture
Mohit Sharma’s could be one of the biggest comebacks in this IPL. Having played the 2015 World Cup, Mohit was off the radar for some time. He started as a net bowler for Titans before being included in place of Yash Dayal. His death over exploits stood out though he failed to stop Ravindra Jadeja’s final blitz.
Mumbai Indians unearthed another talented pacer in Akash Madhwal. The Uttarakhand bowler has been a revelation. His high pace and pinpoint accuracy made him a go-to bowler at the death. He finished with 14 wickets, which included a 5/5 in the Eliminator.
A spat between Virat Kohli and Gautam Gambhir after the RCB-LSG encounter in Lucknow remained the talking point. LSG pacer Naveen-ul Haq also got involved and has since apologised to Kohli.