IPL: Ten Seasons, Ten Heroes

Ten years ago, the world of cricket saw the ascension of what is the most celebrated T20 tournament today. The Indian Premier League (IPL) has proven time and again that it's a forum for new and fresh talent and through-out the last 10 years, there has been an augment in the quality of the game and the players within it. Sportstar takes you through the most memorable performances that IPL has produced so far. Photo: The Hindu
The opening match of the inaugural season of the IPL saw the Kiwi open his account with a smashing 158 not out off just 73 balls against Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB). His innings included 10 fours and 13 sixes at a staggering strike rate of 216.44 that helped Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) defend their total of 222 comfortably. Photo: THE HINDU
The following IPL season, the veteran leg-spinner spun his way into Rajasthan Royals (RR) batsmen who capitulated for a meagre 58 runs, in reply to RCB's 133. Kumble picked up his IPL best of five wickets for just five runs at an astounding economy rate of 1.57. Photo: The Hindu
In IPL 3, Yusuf Pathan slammed the fastest century. The elder Pathan scored a blistering 100 from just 37 balls consisting of nine fours and eight huge sixes at a monumental strike rate of 270.27. Though RR failed to chase the huge total of 212 posted by Mumbai Indians (MI), falling 4 runs short, Pathan's innings was a one that many won’t forget. Photo: The Hindu
The Little Master scored his maiden IPL century against Kochi Tuskers Kerala (KTK) in the 4th season of the IPL. His knock of 100 came from 66 balls including 12 fours and four sixes at a strike rate of 151.51. Although the Master Blaster stayed till the end and made sure that his team reached a decent total of 182, they were unable to defend it. Photo: The Hindu
The batsmen have dominated the last four seasons of the IPL. But that did not stop left-arm spinner Jadeja from trapping and deceiving Deccan Chargers (DC) batsmen from reaching the target of 193 set by Chennai Super Kings (CSK). He bowled a brilliant spell, picking up five wickets for 16 runs at an impressive economy rate of 4.00, and bowling out the opposition for 119. Photo: The Hindu
The Gayle ‘storm’ hit the sixth season of the IPL with a powerful knock of 175 off just 66 balls at a jaw-dropping strike rate of 265.15. His innings included 12 fours and 17 monstrous sixes that propelled RCB to a mammoth total of 263. In reply to this, Pune Warriors India (PWI) succumbed to just 133, RCB drubbing them by 130 runs. Photo: The Hindu
The resilient right-hander from Delhi, powered through the bowling attack of CSK in the very important Qualifier-2 game of IPL-7. He raced away with 12 fours and eight sixes at an imposing strike rate of 210. 34, amassing 122 off just 58 deliveries and ensured Kings XI Punjab's (KXIP) spot in the IPL finals. KXIP thrashed their opponents and won by 24 runs. Photo: The Hindu
The experienced CSK seamer had no qualms in destroying RCB’s top order in season eight of the IPL. He picked up four wickets for 10 runs at an alarming economy rate of 2.50. The men in yellow posted a decent total of 181, and with the help of Nehra comfortably defeated the men in red by 27 runs. Photo: The Hindu
In the previous IPL season, RCB captain Kohli went on a run rampage and collected a total of 973 runs in 16 matches. His season included three centuries, out of which his knock of 113 off just 50 balls against KXIP was the most memorable. He pocketed 12 fours and eight sixes at a punshing strike rate of 226. Kohli's century helped RCB post a formidable total of 211, and shellac their opponents by 82 runs via the D/L method. Photo: The Hindu
In a season that has been dominated by batsmen, irony has it that the most memorable performance came from a bowler. Sunrisers Hyderabad seamer Bhuvneshwar continued to impress with his bowling, picking up his season's best figures of five wickets for 19 runs at a decent economy rate of 4.75. Although the target set was only 159, he triggered the collapse of KXIP's batting line-up for 154 in a nail-biting finish. Photo: The Hindu