Zee Media Bureau/ Andrew Amsan
New Delhi: The way Glenn Maxwell was playing in this tournament, it seemed highly unlikely that any batsman could threaten his orange cap. However, KKR lynchpin Robin Uthappa had different plans. Uthappa ,who has hit a purple patch, scored his 8th consecutive 40-plus score (a new T20 World Record) on Thursday, to overtake Maxwell as the leading run-scorer in IPL 7.
Not many would know, Uthappa is a keen singer and is also part of a Gospel band. But it`s his on-field song we are talking about now. Orange cap holder, Uthappa has scored a total of 572 runs in the tournament at an astonishing average of just over 47 runs with a healthy strike-rate of 137.5. Poster boy Maxwell is now sitting at second place with 533 runs under his belt.
Uthappa ,who has been eyeing a berth in the Indian side, played his last international game nearly six years ago. He had a relatively good start to his international career hitting a match-winning 86 in his debut game against England. He was even an integral member of the 2007 T20 World Cup winning squad, but later failed to sustain the lustre which was once radiating from his game-play.
The past is past and Uthappa knows it better than anyone. Having a dream run at this year`s IPL with scores of 47,65,47,46,80,40,67,83* in the last eight games, he looks a new man. The last knock was probably the best among them. Uthappa looked at complete ease on the field, beautifully timing the ball. Uthappa read the conditions perfectly and avoided taking the aerial root, evident from the fact that he struck only one six in the innings, while he dispatched 10 balls to the boundary. Some of his shots were truly a treat to watch. He was simply par excellence.
With chances of Mahendra Singh Dhoni being rested for the short series to be played at Bangladesh in June, Uthappa surely deserves a chance.