IPL has seen some extraordinary hitters over the years, but who are in the top five?
The advent of the Indian Premier League coincided, or rather contributed to the current glory of T20 cricket. Much of this is down to the big hitters the league has produced or nurtured in these years. Here we take a glance at the batsmen with the biggest strike rates (cut off of a minimum of 500 runs) in the league's history.
Is this even a surprise? The big West Indian has been a constant force in the Indian Premier League and all franchise cricket, bludgeoning bowling attacks to all corners with his terrific hitting prowess. Russell has eight half-centuries in 64 matches in the league and 1400 runs. What makes him stand out is a stupendous strike rate of 186.41, nearly 20 above the next person in the list. Last season, he blitzed a 13-ball 48 against Royal Challengers Bangalore, which is the sixth-fastest knock in the history of the league.
A promoted opener for Kolkata Knight Riders, Sunil Narine had a blast in the Indian Premier League, feasting on new ball during the powerplay overs. The marauding left-hander has been a revelation in the league with the bat after already making a mark with the ball and has a strike rate of 168.34, with his 771 runs coming at an average of less than 20. More than his longevity at the crease, it's his ability to give rousing starts that makes Narine a hit for Kolkata.
His international life might still be a question mark but there's no doubting the Rishabh Pant we have seen in the Indian Premier League so far. The hard-hitting left-hander is among the top three run-scorers in the league's last three seasons combined, but it is his strike rate that makes him a standout player. Pant has a strike rate of 162.69 in the league with a hundred and 11 half-centuries. Of the top five in this list, he has the best average too (36.16). Pant's fastest knock in the league was a 27-ball 78 against Mumbai Indians at the Wankhede.
Maxwell returns to the league this season for his former franchise, Kings XI Punjab. The Australian has an eye-catching record in the league and owns the fourth-highest rate of 161.13 in 69 matches in the league's history. The issue with Maxwell, however, is his consistency and at an average of 22.9, the Australian has failed to play impactful knocks more often. He has just six half-centuries in the 68 times he has batted in the league.
The South African is a surprise addition in this list given that he probably does not count among the most dangerous strikers in the league when you think without checking the stats. Morris, though, owns a record of the fastest knock in the history of the Indian Premier League - a 9-ball 38 in the 2017 edition against the Pune franchise. Overall, Morris has a strike rate of 157.62 in the league with two half-centuries and over 500 runs.
Feature image courtesy: AFP / Sajjad Hussain