Best Batting Partners – IPL
Someone once said that cricket is a cruel sport where 11 players from the opposition team up trying to get rid of the two batsmen present in the ground. Even though it is a team sport when it comes to batting, it is left to the two batsmen out there in the middle. So, the partnership between the two batsmen becomes more crucial for the team cause than the individual performances.
Coming to the international scene, we have always seen many batting pairs dominate the bowlers such as Sachin - Ganguly, Sehwag - Gambhir, and Sangakkara - Mahela, many more to name. Here we are going to see the top 5 pairs of batsmen who took the bowlers to cleaners many times and contributed to their respective franchises in the Indian Premier League.
#5 MS Dhoni & Suresh Raina (CSK)
Image Credits - Anesh Debiky/Gallo Images/Getty Images
The only pair in this list that does not feature an opening batsman. That itself speaks volumes about the partnership between these two men who brought much stability and aggression to the CSK batting lineup. Fondly called as Thala and Chinna Thala by the fans, the combo of inside out shots and helicopter hits from this pair did wonders for the CSK in the middle order. This pair has amassed 1456 runs in 28 innings scoring at an average of 52.
More than hitting boundaries and long sixes, they were able to maneuver the field with their quick running between the wickets at ease, just like the gentle breeze through the stands at Chepauk. They share a great camaraderie off the field as well, which is passing onto the next generation among their kids. Though they are retired from international cricket, they are not done with IPL yet. Hoping for more cracking innings and magic moments from this pair for the yellow side.
#4 Gautam Gambhir & Robin Uthappa (KKR)
The boys representing the City of Joy made an excellent pair at the top for the Shah Rukh Khan owned franchise. Both had a perfect game style that suited the powerplay scenarios and they were able to lay down an ideal platform for the middle-order batsmen. They played big innings and ensured that one of them stays in the pitch for much of the innings duration to put up a healthy total on the scoreboard.
They enjoyed an excellent run with the bat in the 2014 season and played a crucial part in KKR’s title victory that year. This opening duo single-handedly won many matches for the team with several century run partnerships that season. This pair has amassed 1906 runs together scoring at an average of 47. One of them is retired from the game now and the other does not play for KKR anymore.
#3 Shikhar Dhawan and David Warner (SRH)
The southpaws had a good time opening the innings together for Sunrisers Hyderabad. Both had completely different styles of play yet complemented each other. The power-hitting of Warner and the flamboyance of Shikhar proved to be a deadly combination at the top for SRH. They were too hot and spicy to handle, just like the Andhra cuisine.
The skipper and the Gabbar combo played a major role in the team clinching the IPL trophy in 2016. The pair has accumulated 2357 runs at a healthy average of 50 from 47 innings. With Dhawan being traded to Delhi Capitals, this pair cannot be seen anymore together.
#2 Chris Gayle and Virat Kohli (RCB)
Image Credits - Virendra Singh Gosain / Hindustan Times via Getty Images
When the batting powerhouse and the run machine work together, it is pure chaos. That is what happened for most of the times when the duo opened the batting for RCB. With the towering sixes from one end and classy boundaries from the other end, the bowlers had no answers to the challenges posed by this duo.
Most of the runs came in boundaries and sixes when this duo was out in the middle. Both complement each other and release the pressure from one end when the going gets tough for either of them. This duo has amassed 2787 runs at an amazing average of 57. has They often topped the batting charts and in the process destroyed the opposition bowlers completely. They also enthralled the fans with their celebrations while batting.
#1 Virat Kohli and AB De Villiers (RCB)
Image Credits - DIBYANGSHU SARKAR/AFP via Getty Images
The modern-day stalwarts in the limited-overs game representing the City of Garden. The only batting pair in the IPL history to share two 200 run partnerships between them. Class, Elegance, Timing, Innovation, Perfection are some of the vocabularies that can be associated with this duo. They spare no mercy for the bowlers and take the batsmanship to the next level.
The shots all-round the ground and the lightning speed at which they run between the wickets make this pair the most dangerous ever in the IPL history. They thrive under pressure, compete healthily, and take upon any challenges posed to them. The duo has amassed 2848 runs scoring at an extraordinary average of 68 in 42 innings. They are desperate to win the title for their side and hopefully, the upcoming season turns out to be fruitful for them.
As an audience, it is always good to see good communication and healthy competition between the two batsmen out in the middle. With IPL starting next month, looking forward to more such batting exhibitions and splendid partnerships from the batsmen. Cheers!
About the Author
The post is written by Aravind. Aravind is a graduate from IIM Visakhapatnam and an avid cricket enthusiast. He follows the game with great passion. More than mere watching, he likes to analyze the game deeply and write blogs.