Ever since the advent of T20 cricket, The rivalry between the bat and ball has not been the same. A bowler’s duty has become more simple yet demanding, The number of deliveries he has to bowl in a game has become less but the choice of delivery he needs to bowl to a particular batsman has become more challenging.
First edition of T20 World Cup has seen both low scoring and high scoring thrillers but the shots that were never played before have taken place since then. The more accumulation of shots a batsman possesses will create more difficulty for a bowler to tackle him.
It is the time when batsman took their innovative game to the next level with some crazy shots hitting all over the ground. AB de Villiers, Brendon McCullum, Kevin Pieterson and Glenn Maxwell are some of the names who came up with some insane cricketing shots on the International arena.
Twelve years of IPL laid the platform for many such crazy hits. Here are the five enthralling shots that left the audience in awestruck.
1. Suryakumar Yadav – Reverse Flick
A 22-year-old Suryakumar Yadav, who made his debut for Mumbai Indians in IPL 2012, hasn’t really made his presence in a regular playing XI until Kolkata Knight Riders bought him in 2014. He was given a chance in the very first match and was kept aside for the remainder of the season. Coming in at lower order Suryakumar Yadav played many handy knocks in finishing the innings for Kolkata Knight Riders.
In many such knocks, he tended to innovate new ways to find runs and propel the team to a good total. In one of such knocks he played a shot that was never seen before. Corey Anderson from Mumbai Indians bowled an offside full-length delivery at Suryakumar Yadav he switched his bat and guided the ball towards the third-man region and it raced away for four. This famous cheeky invention from Suryakumar Yadav was known as funky switch hit.
After few seasons with Kolkata Knight Riders, he was signed back by the Mumbai Indians in 2018 and made him open the innings which was the revelation for him as he was the highest run-getter for Mumbai Indians that season.
2. AB de Villiers – Vil-scoop
If ever there was a book on innovative cricket shots, AB de Villiers pictures must be present in at least half of the book. This time it was not even a shot that he deliberately played. The sheer power and timing of his bat have produced another such shot that left the bowler in disbelief.
In IPL 2019, When Royal Challengers Banglore faced Kings XI Punjab at Chinnaswamy, Mohammed Shami having conceded two sixes of previous two balls and on the verge of considering third and as a gamble he bowled on above waist full toss to AB de Villiers which was surprisingly not called a No ball. Having misjudged the delivery AB de Villiers has played a shot just to save him from being hit. To his surprise, the ball landed on the roof over long leg for a 95m six.
This shot also came with just one hand in contact with the bat. His innings of 82 of 44 balls including 3 fours and 7 sixes got him Player of the Match award.
3. Ravindra Jadeja – Freak Six
Wonder there is no such picture as both batsman and bowler lying on the ground and watching the ball sailing for a six. Ravindra Jadeja has produced such scene at the IPL 2019, Where the bowler Ben Stokes and him were lying on the ground and watching the ball sail over the long-on for a six.
This happened when Chennai Super Kings faced Rajasthan Royals at Jaipur. Jadeja played this off-balance lofter when the team required 18 runs off 6 balls. It was the timing and power generated from his arms made the ball to travel such distance even without proper balance.
Amidst of all these, Dhoni from the opposite end came towards Jadeja and hit on his helmet with the bat for not attempting a run is a moment for fans to remember. His knock of 9 runs in 4 balls and six from Mitchell Santner ensured Chennai Super Kings win a last-ball victory over Rajasthan Royals.
Fifty from MS Dhoni made him the player of the match despite Jadeja picked two wickets for twenty runs with the ball.
4. AB de Villiers – Lofted cover drive
Twelve years of IPL witnessed many changes and upgrades but the BCCI never made any changes to the logo. AB de Villiers pulled off an unbelievable shot which resembled the same logo. This happened when the South African duo AB de Villiers and Dale Steyn faced each other in IPL 2012.
Dale Steyn at his prime bowling around mid-140’s fired a full-length delivery, if it was another batsman, it might have found himself in trouble But AB de Villiers went towards leg-side and whacked it for an 88m six over deep extra cover. Even Steyn applauded his shot with a smile while leaving back to his mark.
In that game, he smashed 47 runs off 17 balls in the chase to beat Deccan Chargers and received the player of the match award. The pose of AB de Villiers shot resembling IPL logo went viral at that time and even Virender Sehwag tweeted the same picture wishing “Happy Birthday Mr. 360 degrees AB de Villiers, the man who can bat in any pose he wishes too”.
5. AB de Villiers – Funky six
He always raises the bar with his 360-degree shots, The yardstick that he sets for himself is quite upstream. The likes of Jos Buttler and Glenn Maxwell are trying to catch up his path but it’s always a herculean task considering he does it for so many years across all formats.
It was in 2014 when AB de Villiers and Dale Steyn came across each other again and even this time Steyn couldn’t get away from his countrymen brutal stroke-making. Royal Challengers Banglore required 28 runs off 12 balls and with the well-set AB de Villiers in the middle.
Steyn from another end was eager to get his team across the line. AB de Villiers just swept an offside full-length delivery over fine leg for a six leaving everybody shell shocked. It was bowled around 145Kmph and to move before the ball was bowled and produce such a shot was majestic. It didn’t stop there as he smacked 24 runs from Steyn’s over including three sixes.
Hapless Dale Steyn couldn’t do much and caught appreciating and sharing a hug after the match was ended. In that game, AB de Villiers smashed 89 runs off 41 balls to guide Royal Challengers Banglore to victory over Sunrisers Hyderabad and received Player of the match award.
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