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From 'Klaasen's Class' to 'Shashank Redemption' - Top three innings so far in IPL 2024

IPL 2024: Top three innings so far in the tournament. Top three batting performances so far in IPL 2024.


IPL 2024, KKR vs SRH_ Heinrich Klaasen's 63 off 29 goes in vain as KKR trump _ Walking Wicket (Images_ ©IPL_X)
IPL 2024: Heinrich Klaasen's 63 off 29 went in vain as KKR trump (Images: ©IPL/X)

The Indian Premier League (IPL) 2024 has been nothing short of entertaining with the bat dominating the bat in most occasions. In the first 20 games till, the tournament has seen 364 sixes being hit and the run rate is a whopping 9.5 for all the teams.


Adding to that, 2 of the highest scores in IPL history have come in the 2024 edition. First, Sunrisers Hyderabad (277/3) breached the decade-long standing mark of 263/5 set by Royal Challengers Bengaluru (RCB) back in 2013. Secondly, Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) came ever so close to claiming the top spot by amassing 272 against Delhi Capitals (DC) a week later.

 

Given that we have seen a lot in a tournament that has just completed 2 weeks, it is hard to pick which is the best batting effort thus far. But based on the game situations in which the knock was played, here is the list of the top 3 innings of IPL 2024.


Shashank Singh, Punjab Kings (PBKS): 61* off 29 vs Gujarat Titans (GT)

Arguably the best knock came in a chase in IPL 2024, and it was by an unknown commodity from Punjab Kings (PBKS), Shashank Singh. In a tense chase against the Gujarat Titans at Ahmedabad, the 32-year-old from Chhattisgarh showed his nerves of steel as he steered the Kings past the finish line in the final over.


Chasing a daunting total of 200 against a potent bowling attack comprising the likes of Rashid Khan, Mohit Sharma, Umesh Yadav and Noor Ahmed, PBKS found themselves at the crossroads at 70/4 in the 9th over. In walked Shashank with PBKS still needing 130 runs in 68 balls with not much batting to come after him.


All seemed lost for PBKS at that point but not for the brave hard-hitting all-rounder. He first forged a 41-run stand with Sikandar Raza in 22 balls before finding able partners in Jitesh Sharma, and young IPL debutant Ashutosh Sharma (31 off 17). In all those partnerships, Shashank managed control the chase, scoring a splendid 29-ball 61* that included 4 sixes. He was able to drive PBKS home with a ball to spare. 



IPL 2024_ Shashank Singh - From IPL 2024 Auction controversy to winning game for Punjab Kings _ Walking Wicket (Images_ ©BCCI_IPLT20)
Shashank Singh's gutsy 61 off 29 took Punjab home (Images: ©BCCI/IPLT20)
Heinrich Klaassen, Sunrisers Hyderabad (SRH): 63 off 29 vs Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR)

If one must pick the top T20 batters going around the world right now, Heinrich Klaasen will be up there on every list. Such has been the impact of the SRH batter in white-ball cricket over the last few years. In IPL 2023, he amassed 448 runs at a staggering strike rate of 177.08 while averaging just a shade under 50. All while being the lone warrior for his team.


This season, Klaassen seemed to have started from where he left off in 2023. In the very first game of IPL 2024 for SRH against KKR, the wicketkeeper batter almost pulled off a win from a near-impossible position. 


Chasing 209 at Eden Gardens, SRH were reduced to 111/4 in the 12th over when Klaassen entered the crease. They further lost Rahul Tripathi’s wicket in seven balls. The equation grew tougher and tougher as the innings went on and SRH required 20 runs per over in the last three. Now well set at 22 off 17, Klaassen came to his zone, striking six maximums in the next 12 balls to take his team ever so close to the win.

 

He nearly pulled off a heist but a superb final over by Harshit Rana denied what was Klaassen’s moment of glory, as SRH lost by 4 runs. Though his knock, powered by eight maximums, didn’t come in a winning cause, it was an unbelievable effort in taking the match so deep. It should be lauded as one of the best in this IPL. 



IPL 2024, RCB vs PBKS_ Virat Kohli scored 77 off 49 against Punjab _ Walking Wicket (Images_ ©IPL_X)
Virat Kohli scored 77 off 49 against Punjab (Images: ©IPL/X)
Virat Kohli, Royal Challengers Bengaluru (RCB): 77 off 49 vs Punjab Kings (PBKS)

In what was another chasing masterclasss, RCB’s Virat Kohli showed the world how good he in pressure situations. After being given a target of 177 in their home, Kohli began on a positive note hammering 33 of the first 47 runs that RCB scored in 5 with two of his partners back in the pavilion.


Upon his admission, these are the moments for which he craves, and these pressure situations bring the best out of him. Knowing the context, he completely changed his style of play to bring calmness into the chase. Kohli reached his half-century in 31 balls and formed a crucial 43-stand with Rajat Patidar to get the chase deep. 


He eventually fell after making a sensible 77 with the help of 11 fours and two towering maximums with RCB further needing 47 off the last four. The job was eventually completed by the team’s finishers Dinesh Karthik and Mahipal Lomror. Ultimately, RCB registered their only win of their campaign thus far.


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