4 IPL Batsmen who have been so impressive as opener
In the T20 format of cricket, opening batsmen have different roles and responsibilities when compared with other formats of cricket. They have to score as many runs as possible in the power-play which might help the team to post big totals or to chase one.
They are expected to attack the bowlers right from the first ball itself and they have to put some pressure on the bowling side straight away. There may be field restrictions but it is not at all easy for openers to get the team off to a flying start in each and every game and it requires a special set of skills to do so.
Some players in the list were middle order batsmen in the previous editions of IPL and some were not used as an opening batsman for the first few matches in IPL 2018 even though they opened the innings for their teams in the previous editions of IPL. But, all of them proved their worth after being promoted as openers.
Let's take a look at four players who are all performing well after being promoted as openers in IPL 2018.
#1 KL Rahul
In IPL 2016, Rahul played for Royal Challengers Bangalore and scored 397 runs (4 fifties) in 14 matches at a strike rate of 146.49. Rahul opened the innings for RCB in few matches in the absence of Chris Gayle but he also batted at number 4 in some matches.
KL Rahul missed IPL 2017 due to a shoulder injury. In 2018 IPL auction, Kings XI Punjab purchased him for whopping Rs 11 crore but Rahul has already proven his worth in the IPL 2018.
In IPL 2018, Rahul was provided with a permanent opener role by KXIP and currently, he is one of the best openers in the tournament so far. In 12 matches, Rahul has scored 558 runs (5 fifties) at a strike rate of 161.73.
After being promoted as an opener, Rahul scored the fastest fifty in the history of IPL (50 runs in just 14 balls) against Delhi Daredevils and his average in this edition of IPL is at 55.80 which is pretty much high for any batsmen in a T20 format.