IPL 2021 Chepauk XI: Which players performed best? | Which players performed best at Chepauk in the initial stages of the IPL 2021 league stage?
IPL 2021 has now been suspended, but we were fortunate to see some really fantastic cricket.
As we all know, the initial games of the mega event took place in two of the most historical grounds of India; the Chepauk and the Wankhede. But, we got contrasting results in both these venues as the tracks of the Wankhede proved to be a belter for the batting side whereas those of the Chepauk looked quite challenging for majority of the batsmen. The Chepauk tracks were sluggish on most of the occasions and even the players like Kieron Pollard, Andre Russell and David Warner struggled to play shots freely.
But, there were definitely some batsmen who made merry on those wickets and showed their class to utmost extent. Also, as a bowler you have to be wise and skilled enough to exploit these conditions; that’s what I believe. Some bowlers used those conditions to perfection and thrived really well in the Chennai leg of the tournament. In this article, I am going to mention a team of those players who I think were exceptional at the Chepauk. Here we go.
WHO WERE THE TWO BEST OPENERS IN CHENNAI?
On the tracks of Chennai, the score made in the powerplay proved to be a boon for the batting side as scoring runs seemed tougher with the progression of the match. So, I have considered the “intent parameter” where I have compared the SRs, boundary run percentages and the balls taken to hit one boundary in the “powerplay phase” of all the openers across teams in the Chennai and have mentioned them in the decreasing order of their SRs in the graph below.
It is clear from the graph that Jonny Bairstow is the clear winner in our intent parameter. But, as we know intent is not everything and a player has to be consistent as well. For this purpose, I have mentioned the consistency parameter, where I have compared the total runs, average and overall SR of all the openers in Chepauk this season and have mentioned them in the decreasing order of the runs accumulated by them in the graph below.
From the 2 graphs, it is quite evident that Jonny Bairstow, Nitish Rana and Rohit Sharma were the top 3 openers of the IPL games at the Chepauk this season, with Bairstow and Rana being the top 2.
Who was the best at no 3?
Suryakumar Yadav(4 inns), Rahul Tripathi (3 inns), Manish Pandey (3 inns), Chris Gayle(2 inns), Rajat Patidar (2 inns), Kane Williamson (2 inns), Steven Smith (1 inn), Rishabh Pant (1 inn), Ishan Kishan (1 inn) and Shahbaz Ahmed (1 inn) were the players who batted at number 3 in Chennai. I have taken only the first three names because of their considerable sample size and have compared their respective performances in the graph below.
From the graph, it’s pretty clear that Suryakumar Yadav and Rahul Tripathi are the best two names to bat at no 3. Surya has better average, boundary run percentage and bpb than Tripathi. The difference in their SRs is small. So, I would like to have Suryakumar Yadav as my no 3.
WHO WERE THE BEST PLAYERS AT NO 4 AND 5?
There should not be any debate regarding the number 4 and 5 batsman at Chepauk. Glenn Maxwell and AB de Villiers were way ahead of anybody else batting at those positions in Chennai. Their exploits are mentioned in the chart below.
|RUNS||AVG||SR||BOUNDARY RUN PERCENTAGE||BPB||DOT PERCENTAGE|
From the above table, we can clearly see how dominant this duo was in Chennai. They both complimented each other beautifully in the game against KKR. Maxwell kept the scoreboard ticking in the middle overs and played a very crucial part in dominating the spinners, whereas AB played two match-winning knocks against MI and KKR by batting till the end. So, these two are my obvious picks for the no 4 and no 5 in this XI.
NO 6 CONUNDRUM AND MY SOLUTION TO THE PROBLEM:
The games in Chennai were dominated mostly by the top order and middle order batsmen. The finishers struggled to get going mainly due to the sluggishness of the surfaces. So, there are no impressive stats available for a no 6 batter in Chennai. As I am mentioning the “best players in Chennai this year”, so I find it convenient to include Rohit Sharma into this side. The most important reason of Rohit’s success was his adaptability and his style of batting as per the demands of the track. For example, we don’t often see Rohit Sharma playing the delicate shots like a late cut, do we? He took the responsibility of being the senior most batsman of the team and scored the most number of runs (201) at an average of more than 40 and a decent SR of more than 130. So, as there are no impressive numbers available for a finisher, Rohit becomes my automatic choice for an extra batsman in this side. He will be a part of my top 3 alongside Jonny Bairstow and Nitish Rana.
WHO WERE THE TWO BEST SPINNERS OF THE CHENNAI LEG?
For me, Rahul Chahar and Rashid Khan were the two best spinners in Chennai. Rahul Chahar was the highest wicket taker among spinners and played a very crucial role in both the victories of MI in that venue. Rashid was the hardest to be hit, as his overall economy of just 5.6 suggests, even after bowling his full quota of 4 overs in all the 5 games. Below I have mentioned their respective numbers.
Such brilliant numbers keep these two above the other spinners. More importantly, they have performed in 4 out of the 5 games they played there. So, Rahul Chahar and Rashid Khan are the obvious choices for 2 spinners in my team.
WHO WERE THE BEST 3 SEAMERS IN THE GAMES IN CHENNAI?
As far as seamers are concerned, Harshal Patel was the best in business in Chennai in terms of picking wickets as he took 9 wickets in just 3 games. His overall economy was an unbelievable 5.75. He used the conditions to perfection and picked a match winning fifer against MI in the very first game. He mixed his pace, used those cutters, slower balls and even nailed good Yorkers at the death. Some major credits of RCB doing well in Chennai definitely should be given to him.
My other two seamers, though didn’t get as many wickets as they would have liked, were fabulous in Chennai as far as their economy is concerned. The first name I was very impressed with is Mohammed Siraj. He has developed his bowling in the death overs to a great extent. He was bowling Yorker after Yorker and managed to keep a guy like Andre Russell quite in the 19th over in the game against KKR. I was very impressed by his improved skills in bowling with the white ball.
The third name which I would like to include is Jasprit Bumrah. The reason is quite obvious; he was successful in keeping the best of the batsmen quite in major parts of the games as he always has been throughout his career. I find these 3 guys the hardest to score against and therefore these 3 are my picks as the best 3 seamers to have played in Chennai this season. Their effectiveness is clearly visible from their respective economy, dot ball percentages and bpbs, which are given below.
|ECONOMY||DOTS||BOUNDARIES CONCEDED||DOT 0/0||BPB|
So, the best XI to have played in Chennai this season, in my opinion is:-
AB De Villiers
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Written by Debashish Sarangi. Follow Debashish on Twitter today.