History didn’t repeat itself as Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) failed to pull off another 190+ chase in the tournament final. Chennai Super Kings (CSK) won the Indian Premier League (IPL) 2021, in what was their ninth final in 12 seasons. The MS Dhoni-led yellow brigade laid hands on the coveted trophy for the fourth time.
CSK’s win was set up by their batters, with Faf du Plessis slamming a 59-ball 86 and getting good support from Ruturaj Gaikwad, Robin Uthappa and Moeen Ali. The former South African captain finished the tournament as the second-highest run-getter.
KKR looked good in the first 10 overs of their innings, but Shardul Thakur’s three-for dented their hopes. The pacer became the highest wicket-taker in the UAE leg of the tournament.
Let’s look at five interesting stats from the IPL 2021 final.
#1 Firsts for MS Dhoni
MS Dhoni became the first cricketer to captain 300 T20 matches. He also became the first player to win an IPL trophy after turning 40.
Here’s another rare co-incidence:
#2 CSK openers script a rare IPL record
It’s the third time two batters from the same team have scored over 600 runs in the same season. The other two instances were from the Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) camp.
Virat Kohli and Chris Gayle achieved that in the IPL 2013. In IPL 2016, Virat Kohli and AB de Villiers finished with over 600 runs.
This season, Ruturaj Gaikwad finished with 635 runs to claim the Orange Cap, while Faf du Plessis came strikingly close with 633 runs. It’s also the first time the three top run-getters in an IPL season are within a 10-run range.
At 24 years and 257 days, Ruturaj Gaikwad became the youngest to win the IPL Orange Cap.
#3 Eoin Morgan records a new low
Eoin Morgan finished IPL 2021 with 133 runs at an average of 11.08. It’s the lowest batting average for any captain in an IPL season (minimum 10 innings), striking under 96.
Mumbai Indians’ (MI) Harbhajan Singh averaged 12 in 2012, but his strike rate was 135. Rajasthan Royals’ (RR) Shane Warne averaged 13.5 in IPL 2009. However, both the players’ primary role was of bowlers’.
#4 Lockie Ferguson’s worst spell
Lockie Ferguson recorded his worst spell in T20 cricket, going for 56 runs from his four overs. Before the final, he had an economy rate of 6.46, averaging 12.9 this season.
The only other time he has gone for over 50 in a T20 spell was against the same opposition and at the same venue in IPL 2020. He then went for 4-0-54-0.
Lockie Ferguson has a T20 career economy rate of 7.5, but against CSK, he averages 143, going at almost 12 an over.
#5 A rare feat for KKR
KKR became the first team in the IPL to finish at every position from one to eight in the tournament. Having won both the finals in 2012 and 2014, the runners-up position had eluded them until Friday.
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