IPL 2019: One unexpected performer from each team
- Not many expected these players to set the IPL on fire, but that's exactly what they did.
Kings XI Punjab - Mohammed Shami
Mohammed Shami has scripted a dream turnaround in both international cricket and in the IPL.
The pacer was bought by Kings XI Punjab in the 2019 player auction for a huge sum of ₹4.8 crore despite his poor form in past IPL seasons. While a similar performance was expected from Shami, he emerged to be the highest wicket-taker for Punjab and managed to keep his economy in check.
He picked up 19 wickets from just 14 games at a decent economy of 8.48 and was unlucky not to get a few more. He was deadly with the new ball and did a good job in the death overs too, making up for Andrew Tye's poor form.
While Shami's resurgence in international cricket was an indicator that things were changing, his IPL performance took everyone by surprise.
Kolkata Knight Riders - Andre Russell
While this might seem like nonsense after what the man did, Andre Russell's performance this season was not on expected lines. The Caribbean all-rounder's fitness and form were in question ahead of the 2019 season.
The turnaround, however was obvious right from the first game as he led the side to victory with a blistering cameo of 49. That set his season on track, and he ended up scoring 510 runs in 13 innings averaging 56.66 at a strike-rate of 204.81.
Russell struck 52 sixes, the most by a single player this season, and swept away the MVP and Super Striker awards. He also picked up 11 wickets and proved to be a partnership breaker, though he was on the expensive side.
Russell's dream run will not be forgotten for a long time, but a performance of this level wasn't expected from him.Published 15 May 2019, 01:31 IST