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Biggest hits and flops of IPL 2024: April 15-21

IPL 2024 Weekly Digest: Biggest hits and flops so far. RCB's bowling, Punjab Kings' batting are some of the flops while Travis Head and Sunil Narine's ton are some of the hits from the last week.

IPL 2024: Travis Head is the 2nd highest run-scorer after 6 games with 324 runs | Walking Wicket (Images_ ©BCCI_IPLT20)
IPL 2024: Head is the 2nd highest run-scorer with 324 runs (Images: ©BCCI/IPLT20)

Indian Premier League (IPL) 2024 is serving up entertaining cricket as batting performances continue to overshadow bowling spells. The week of April 15-21 saw some tons being scored, while a few bowling spells also made headlines. Here are some of the biggest hits and flops of IPL 2024 (April 15-21).

Biggest hits from IPL 2024

Travis Head, 102 vs RCB, 89 vs DC

The Aussie opener is having a gala time in the Indian subcontinent, scoring runs aplenty here since the 2023 World Cup. Playing for Sunrisers Hyderabad (SRH), the southpaw is giving great starts along with his opening partner Abhishek Sharma. Travis Head cracked 102 off just 41 balls with 9 fours and 8 sixes against the Royal Challengers Bengaluru (RCB). In this match, he and Abhishek posted an opening stand of 108 in just 8.1 overs. 

Head and Abhishek did even better in the next match against Delhi Capitals (DC), putting a partnership of 131 runs in just 6.2 overs. Head cracked a 32-ball 89 with 11 fours and 6 sixes. On both these batting beauties, Head made merry, driving, pulling, lofting, smashing, and just throwing the bat to make a combined score of 197 in 73 balls with 20 fours and 14 sixes. These are unbelievable figures, helping SRH post a total above 250 both times, making it out of reach for the opponents.

Sunil Narine 109, 2/30 against RR

At 35, Sunil Narine has reinvented his T20 career, slamming the bowling attack as an opener for Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR). In the clash against Rajasthan Royals (RR), Narine took on some world-class bowlers in Trent Boult, YS Chahal, and R Ashwin to crack his maiden T20 ton. Narine scored 109 off 56 balls with 13 fours and 6 sixes. He was merciless in his attack against Rajasthan bowlers, giving no respect to good balls or the bowler’s reputation. 

It was thanks to his century that Kolkata reached 223/6, while the next best score was 30 by Angkrish Raghuvanshi. Later, Narine took two crucial wickets to almost win the match for his team. But Kolkata lost to Jos Buttler’s brilliance, and Narine’s all-round show went in vain.

IPL 2024, KKR vs RR, Key Takeaways_ SJos Buttler's 7th IPL hundred helped RR beat KKR _  Walking Wicket (Images_ ©BCCI_IPLT20)
Jos Buttler's 7th IPL hundred helped RR beat KKR (Images: ©BCCI/IPLT20)
Jos Buttler 107* against KKR

Jos Buttler was not at his best in the first half of the innings as Rajasthan were chasing a daunting target of 224 against Kolkata. However, Buttler didn’t throw his wicket away. He continued to rotate the strike even as wickets kept tumbling at the other end. As the innings wore on, he started getting his rhythm back and got the big hits going. 

He got support from Rovman Powell’s 13-ball 26 in the death, and it gave Rajasthan belief that Buttler could take the team home. In the eight-wicket stand of 38 runs, Buttler cleverly farmed all the strikes to score all the remaining runs, while his partner Avesh Khan remained on 0 off 0 balls. It was clever batting from Buttler in the death as the Englishman duly reached his ton, and also took his team home. He scored 107* off 60 balls with 9 fours and 6 sixes.

Ashutosh Sharma’s 61 against MI

Punjab Kings’ (PBKS) top order has failed repeatedly in IPL 2024. And time and again, their middle-lower order has rescued them. In the clash against Mumbai Indians (MI), it was again the same situation for Punjab. They were reduced to 77/6 in 9.2 overs before Ashutosh Sharma walked into bat at No 8. 

The game was virtually gone from Punjab’s hands, but Ashutosh had other plans. He started a brilliant counter-attacking innings, pulling, driving, and playing lofted shots to great effect. His sweep of a full-length ball from Jasprit Bumrah for a six was the highlight of his innings. He cracked a 28-ball 61 with 2 fours and 7 sixes and fell short to bat through the innings and take Punjab home. But his innings gave Mumbai a scare.

KL Rahul’s 82 against CSK

Lucknow Super Giants (LSG) skipper-cum-opener KL Rahul was getting a start in each match, but he was failing to convert them into a big score. He finally made amends against Chennai Super Kings (CSK), making a 53-ball 82 with 9 fours and 3 sixes to take his team home. He posted a stand of 134 runs for the first wicket with Quinton de Kock and sealed the game for Lucknow. 

The highlight of Rahul’s batting was the manner he went about the task of chipping away at the target. There were no fancy shots. He played proper textbook cricket and relied on playing risk-free cricket. He rotated the strike, punished the bad balls, kept up with the required run rate, and slowly and steadily won the race.

IPL 2024, PBKS vs GT_ R Sai Kishore took 4-33 against Punjab Kings_ Walking Wicket (Images_ ©BCCI_IPLT20)
R Sai Kishore took 4-33 against Punjab Kings (Images: ©BCCI/IPLT20)
Sai Kishore 4/33 vs PBKS

Gujarat Titans (GT) had an easy win over Punjab as their spinners first bowled the opposition out for a below-par score of 142 before the batters chased it down. Gujarat spinner R Sai Kishore led the bowling charts with 4/33, as Punjab's top-order faltered in the face of tight spin bowling. 

He was ably supported by his other spin partners Rashid Khan and Noor Ahmad as the spinners bowled 13 overs to take 7 wickets. Kishore was brilliant in his line and length, giving nothing away for batters to take him down. He was duly rewarded with a four-wicket haul. 

Biggest flops from IPL 2024

Losing momentum for RCB

As they say, winning is a habit, so is losing. The Royal Challengers Bengaluru (RCB) seem to have found a losing momentum, struggling to even convert winning positions into actual wins. They have lost six matches in a row now. Twice in this week of April 15-21, they came close to winning, but could not finish off the chase. 

In the clash against Hyderabad, RCB were chasing a target of 288, but they kept chipping away at the target with some contributions from openers, and later a counter-attacking innings of 83 off 35 balls from Dinesh Karthik. But they fell short by 25 runs. 

Later, they again came close to winning against Kolkata, after Karn Sharma smashed three sixes in the last over off Mitchell Starc to bring down the equation to 3 runs off 2 balls. But RCB managed just one run and lost two wickets in the next two balls to lose the match by a solitary run. 

Punjab’s collective batting failure 

Punjab Kings’ top order has been in disarray this season. They have lacked stability at the top. The absence of their star batter and captain Shikhar Dhawan due to injury has compounded their problems. Hence, twice in the week of April 15-21, they lost half their wickets with hardly enough runs on the board only for the middle-lower order to rescue them. 

In the match against Mumbai, they were reduced to 77/6 before a special knock from Ashutosh saw them make a match of it, but fell short of the 194-run target by just 9 runs. In the clash against Gujarat, they were reduced to 86/5 before they folded for 142.  Punjab need to resolve their top-order woes.


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