Siddharth Tak / Zee Research Group
Is Indian Premier League (IPL) a paradise for left hand batsmen? Yes, left hand batsmen have passed the IPL test with flying colors taking prime slots amongst highest run getters in six IPL tournaments played so far.
A study of stats of IPL matches played so far (during five IPL tournaments and the ongoing season) shows that three of the five highest run getters are left hand batsmen: Suresh Raina (2613), Gautam Gambhir (2385) and Chris Gayle (2370). Rohit Sharma (2389) and Sachin Tendulkar (2233) are the two right hand batsmen in the highest run getters list.
The cumulative trend favoring left hand batsmen is endorsed in this IPL season as well. It all began in 2008 when in the inaugural edition itself left hander Shaun Marsh emerged the top run getter scoring 616 runs. Three other left hand batsmen Sourav Ganguly (534), Sanath Jayasuriya (514), Graeme Smith (441) were the other top scorers of first season. Shane Watson (472) was the only right hand batsmen in top category.
Mathew Hayden was awarded orange cap for scoring most number (572) of runs in IPL 2009. Adam Gilchrist (495) and Suresh Raina (434) were the other two left hand batsmen in the top five run getter category.
Things changed a bit in 2010 when Sachin Tendulkar recorded highest aggregate score of 618 runs during the tournament. He is the only right hand batsman so far to get the orange cap in IPL history. Suresh Raina (520), Saurabh Ganguly (493), however, still managed to get a slot in the top five batsmen that year.
The top five left hand batsmen with most runs in 2011 were Chris Gayle (608), Shaun Marsh (504) and Michael Hussey (492).
Chris Gayle did it again in 2012 scoring maximum (733) runs in IPL 5. Gautam Gambhir (590) and Shikhar Dhawan (569) were the other two left hand batsmen to strike it rich.
Moreover, Chris Gayle has now emerged as the most impressive batsman in the IPL history playing a record innings of 175 runs against Pune in the current season. His blistering knock set up several world records as he hit 17 sixes and 13 fours in a 66 balls innings against Pune Warriors. He has also hit maximum sixes (169) in IPL history.
A further pointer showed that most ducks recorded in IPL history belonged to right hand batsmen: Rohit Sharma, Amit Mishra , Manish Pandey have scored the highest number (8) of ducks each while Jacques Kallis and Shane Warne have seven ducks each to their credit in IPL history.