One of the more sought-after skills in a batsman is the capability to belt a maximum. The nature of the T20 game is that last ball sixes are no longer miracles of the past.
Games turn in a matter of an over scattered with sixes, bringing back teams from the dead. Arguably the best place to spray a ball to all parts of the stadium is at the top of the order. It ensures that you have more overs to stay in the middle, not a luxury if you are in the middle or lower order.
This list consists of folks who are top-order batsmen. The only exception is MS Dhoni, who is known for finishing games. A few other names come to mind when you think of six-hitting numbers in the Indian Premier League.
Here are five of the leading pinch hitters (in term of sixes hit) over the history of the tournament
|2.||AB de Villiers||169||156||4849||235||133*||40.40||151.91|
With a strike rate of 150.11, the self-proclaimed “Universe Boss” holds records across all the major T20 leagues. There is an award for the most number of 6s hit in a season. Gayle has won this four times.
Punjab has retained Gayle for the 2021 season. Last year, he played seven games, making 288 runs. Slotted at the top order, he could potentially pose a problem for his opponents.
2. AB de Villiers – perhaps the most dynamic cricketer on this list, AB has long been known for his versatility as a batsman.
A mainstay in the Bangalore side, the South African comes second on this list with 235 sixes.
Mr. 360 has joined his IPL team ahead of the tournament that they’ve finished second at thrice. They’ll look to utilise his strike rate of 151.91 to improve on last year’s playoff loss.
3. MS Dhoni – Dhoni’s modus operandi is finishing games. This list would not be complete without him. Chennai’s “Thala” clocks in at number 3 on this list with 216 maximums to his name.
Dhoni was a notable absentee amongst the India Legends team during the recently concluded Veterans Road Safety World Series. Sachin Tendulkar led a team made up of the 2011 World Cup winners to a triumph over Sri Lanka in the finals.
The 136.75 strike rate didn’t come in handy with an early season exit for his IPL team in 2020, but for the 3-time winners, there is always next year.
4. Rohit Sharma – Mumbai’s prodigal son, Rohit Sharma comes in 4th on the list with 213 sixes.
Captain Sharma has been part of 5 title-winning squads in 12 seasons of the IPL, 4 with Mumbai. He was also part of successive series wins against Australia (away) and England (at home) in the run-up to this year’s marquee T20 tournament. His form does not only include white-ball cricket but also extends to the longer red-ball format.
The opener has a reputation for steadying the ship for his side. He will lead the side out to defend their IPL crown this season.
5. Virat Kohli – If it weren’t for Dhoni and Sharma, this list would have been a Bangalore old boy’s club.
Kohli rounds up fifth on the most sixes list with 201 in 184 innings during his IPL career.
The India captain comes off a successful T20 home campaign against number one ranked England. During this stretch, runs (and sixes) flowed off his bat.
Bangalore will look to take advantage of his form in this year’s edition of the tournament.
A T20 game consists of myriad components for the batting team to set a target against their opposition. The maximum is one way to accelerate the run rate. Batsmen are now specialist pinch hitters who spend hours trying to find the centre of their bat. Bottom-line is, if you want to get onto this list – hit the ball clean!