The IPL has become the top T20 league in the world because of the nail-biting thrillers that it delivers almost every time. Since the world's best cricketers participate in the IPL, the competition level is among the highest in the sport.
Every season, there is an intense race between the franchises to earn a place in the playoffs. Hence, every game in the IPL is important, and it is necessary to adopt a never-say-die attitude to achieve success in the league.
Over the last 13 years, the cricket universe has seen many impactful performances by batters in the IPL. In T20 cricket, sometimes a 10-ball 30 is more valuable than a 35-ball 50. Cameos from middle-order batsmen and the lower-middle batsmen can turn the game upside down.
And in this listicle today, we will look back at the five incredible cameos from batsmen that changed the fate of the match in the IPL.
1. Albie Morkel - 28 (7) vs. RCB, IPL 2012
Virat Kohli is the highest run-getter in IPL history. He has played many incredible knocks in the tournament. However, he had a forgettable outing with the ball in a game against the Chennai Super Kings during the 2012 season.
RCB batted first at Chepauk and scored 205/8 in their 20 overs. Chasing 206, CSK were 163/4 after 18 overs. The required run rate was 21.50 when RCB skipper Daniel Vettori handed the ball to Kohli.
New batsman Albie Morkel faced Kohli and what followed was a disaster for RCB. Morkel smashed two fours and three sixes, aggregating 28 runs off Kohli's over. The equation came down to 15 off the final six. Although Morkel lost his wicket on the second ball of the 20th over, CSK won that game by five wickets.
2. AB de Villiers - 47*(17) vs. DC, IPL 2012
In the same season, Albie Morkel's compatriot AB de Villiers produced a fantastic performance against the Deccan Chargers. AB de Villiers was on 9*(7) when his partner Mayank Agarwal returned to the pavilion. RCB needed 39 runs off the last three overs.
Find the IPL 2021 broadcast channel details here.
Dale Steyn, who had bowled a maiden over earlier in the game, came in to bowl the 18th over. AB de Villiers showed no remorse to his South Africa teammate as he whacked his deliveries all around the park. The RCB star smashed two fours and two sixes to take 23 runs from the six balls bowled by Steyn.
He continued in the same vein in the 19th over bowled by Anand Rajan. AB de Villiers guided RCB home with seven balls to spare. From 9*(7), de Villiers raced to 47*(17).
3. Krishnappa Gowtham - 33*(11) vs. MI, IPL 2018
Krishnappa Gowtham became the most expensive uncapped player in IPL history at the 2021 auction. The Chennai Super Kings signed him for ₹9.25 crore, and one of the main reasons behind it was his ability to finish innings with a flourish.
Gowtham showcased his talent against his former franchise Mumbai Indians in 2018. Playing for RR, Gowtham came out to bat at number eight, with Rajasthan needing 43 runs off 17 balls. MI had the likes of Mustafizur Rahman, Jasprit Bumrah and Hardik Pandya available to bowl the final overs.
However, that made no difference to Gowtham, who played a gem of a knock to guide his team to the win. Gowtham scored 33 runs off just 11 balls, smacking four fours and two sixes as RR beat MI by three wickets.
Krishnappa scored two boundaries in Bumrah's over, while he hit a four and a six each off Rahman and Pandya's bowling.
4. Andre Russell - 48*(13) vs. RCB, IPL 2019
Like Albie Morkel, Andre Russell played an unbelievable innings while chasing a 206-run target against the Royal Challengers Bangalore. Hosting KKR in Bengaluru during the 2019 season, RCB scored 205/3 in their 20 overs.
KKR were down to 153/5 after 17 overs, with Andre Russell in the middle on 1*(2). Mohammed Siraj came in to bowl the 18th over but could not complete it as he bowled a beamer, his second of the night, to Russell. The Caribbean all-rounder smashed that full toss out of the park.
Marcus Stoinis was given the responsibility to complete the over, but the Aussie all-rounder leaked 15 runs off the last four balls. The equation came down to 30 runs off 12 deliveries.
Tim Southee bowled the 19th over, where he leaked 28 runs off five balls to Russell. Southee got hit for four sixes and a four. KKR secured the win on the first ball of the 20th over.
Russell took the Man of the Match award for his incredible 13-ball 48* that silenced the M. Chinnaswamy Stadium.
5. Balachandra Akhil - 27*(7) vs. DC, IPL 2008
Former RCB all-rounder Balachandra Akhil is one of the few players in IPL history to have scored runs at a strike rate of 385+ in an innings where a player faced seven or more deliveries. Akhil accomplished the feat in the inaugural season against the Deccan Chargers.
Playing at home, DC set a 166-run target for RCB. The home team reduced RCB to 141/5 in 17.2 overs. Bangalore needed 26 runs off 16 balls when Akhil came out to bat. The all-rounder smashed two fours off the first two balls he faced, bowled by Chaminda Vaas.
Chamara Silva bowled the 18th over, where Akhil hit three maximums and secured the win for RCB. Akhil is not among the most popular IPL stars, but his 27*(8) will always have a special place in the hearts of the RCB fans.