IPL 2021 Preview

IPL 2021 Preview

The second part of the Indian Premier League starts on Sunday night and as usual there will be plenty of focus on power hitting.  With each team having played a minimum of seven matches we look at which team has hit the most boundaries and which player has the best boundary to ball percentage.  Plus we look at Steve Smith’s numbers from the first stage of the IPL and look at an area he needs to improve on in T20 cricket. 

 Boundary hitting 

T20 cricket is about power hitting and boundaries. Which team has hit the most sixes & fours during the first stage of the IPL.  Chennai is well ahead of the teams while Hyderabad has not only the least boundaries, but they are also the last on the IPL ladder. 

Stats in the first stage of the IPL in 2021

Off the 68 balls Smith has faced after the power-play, he has only hit 7 boundaries, that is a boundary every 10 balls.  The best batters in T20 average a boundary every six balls, it is an aspect of his batting that Smith needs to improve on during the IPL.  

Gav Joshi on Steve Smith’s batting in the IPL

The Boundary hitters

There are 37 players that have scored 100 or more runs in the IPL season thus far, so who amongst the lot has the best boundaries to ball ratio? Below are the top five batsmen after the stage 1 of the IPL. 

Stats in the first stage of the IPL in 2021

The second stage of the IPL will be played on the larger grounds in the UAE and it remains to be seen if players can continue to hit boundaries at a similar rate. 

Steve Smith

There has been some conjecture about Steve Smith’s role in T20 cricket. In recent times there has been an argument that he needs to improve on his strike-rate and hit more boundaries. 

 In the five innings at the IPL, he has scored 104 runs from 93 balls at Strike-rate of 111.82. The average strike-rate for top 3 in the IPL so far has been 128.  Smith’s numbers are clearly well below that mark. 

Smith’s major role is to hold up one end and anchor the innings from the end of the power-play to the death overs. (16-20). He has played a similar role for Delhi Capitals this season, but it is his inability to hit boundaries in that period that is a concern.  

Steve Smith’s stats in the first stage of the IPL in 2021

Off the 68 balls Smith has faced after the power-play, he has only hit 7 boundaries, that is a boundary every 10 balls.  The best batters in T20 average a boundary every six balls, it is an aspect of his batting that Smith needs to improve on during the IPL.  

One aspect in Smith’s favours is that he is exceptional at rotating strike during the post power play period averaging a dot-ball only 1/10 times. 

Smith will no doubt be looking at the second part of the IPL to improve his boundary hitting ability post the power-play period. 

Stats Source:  Cricbuzz & IPLT20.com

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