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5 greatest players of the shortest format of the game

These players unite power, skill, experience and thinking to achieve consistency.

Top 5 / Top 10 02 Jan 2018, 08:37 IST

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It is often said that the T20 format is the most unpredictable form of cricket. It is a game controlled by match winners. A game where it takes only one player in the team to rout the opposition. In this high-intensity and high-risk game, one-off performances are greatly admired. However, the hallmark of a great T20 player is consistency, the ability to repeatedly emulate their match-winning performances.

The IPL is undoubtedly the biggest T20 tournament the sport has ever seen. Success attained in the IPL is a hallmark of evergreen class, skill and legacy. Here are of the greatest players the IPL has ever seen, in my opinion

#1 Chris Gayle

Chris Gayle can be extremely destructive at his best. After becoming the first player to score a century in a T20 international, the left-hander amassed a statistically incredible 20 centuries in T20's, and thereafter nicknamed the 'Don' of the shortest format. The Jamaican superstar's relentless success can be majorly attributed to his power.

IPL 2011 was a breakthrough year for the West Indian, where he amassed 608 runs in 12 games at a stellar average of 67.55. The most remarkable aspect, though, was the rate at which these runs were accumulated. His incredible strike rate of 183.13 gave birth to the very popular IPL phrase: "Gayle force."

Gayle was an impact player, or as the commentators say, 'boom or bust.' However, on his day, he would single-handedly bat the opposition out of the game. Featuring the highest average of 41.2 amongst players with at least 50 games, the T20 giant boasts 5 hundreds in his incredible IPL career. His 265 sixes in the tournament are well clear of Suresh Raina, who stands at a meager 173 sixes.

The highlight of his IPL career is, without doubt, the 175 of 66 balls he struck at the M Chinnaswamy on the 23rd April 2013, at an extraordinary strike rate of 265. The 17 sixes in this innings remained the highest in an IPL innings, and at one stage, the commentators were entertaining the idea of the first T20 double hundred.

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