Since the COVID-19 pandemic, Indian players showed up for the first time to play in a competition when they journeyed to the UAE to participate in the IPL tournament.
Six international teams have already played cricket in the now popular known biosecure environment before the Indian players.
India’s first series in the current COVID-19 era will be against Australia starting November 27.
The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) could have played an international series earlier, but the board wanted the players to play IPL to audition for the upcoming ICC T20 World Cup 2021.
IPL 2020 has given players enough time to gain form and fitness after a long lockdown period of 7 months.
Consequently, the Indian team will now be best positioned to play in an international series after IPL.
Here is a list of the top 5 Indian players from IPL:
Left-handed opening batsman Dhawan has been in and out of the Indian cricket team due to injury and form. He had struggled earlier with his strike-rate, which kept him away from the T20 squad.
But this IPL, he has shown the form and strike rate required for a proper T20 opener. He has scored 525 runs at a strike rate of 145, including two back to back centuries.
He has been picked for Indian T20, and ODI squad against Australia and will undoubtedly seek to impact the format.
KL Rahul has been the most consistent IPL player as he has amassed over 500 runs for three consecutive IPL seasons. Year after year, his performance has become better and better.
This year he had the additional responsibility of captaining an IPL side. His side didn’t perform too well, but it did not affect his batting form. He is the leading run-score this season, with 670 runs at a modest strike rate of 129.3.
He batted with more responsibility and didn’t give his wicket easily.
His excellent leadership skills have earned him a vice-captaincy role in white-ball cricket against Australia in the absence of Rohit Sharma.
He has made a comeback in the Test squad and hopes to establish himself as a Test cricketer.
Mayank Agarwal has had an exceptionally good IPL for King XI Punjab, batting alongside his skipper KL Rahul. The biggest strength of Mayank is the attitude with which he plays his cricket.
He has always been the aggressor for KXIP, which has allowed KL Rahul to play second fiddle. It is easy to be aggressive, but sometimes players become reckless, but not so with Mayank Agarwal.
He has scored 424 runs in 11 matches at a strike rate of 156.4, and that’s a big positive in terms of limited-overs cricket for India and is one of the main reasons he has earned his maiden call in the T20 squad.
Bumrah didn’t start off well in 2019 before the COVID-19 pandemic. He had come back from an injury in 2019. He wasn’t able to pick even a single wicket in Australia and Sri Lanka series.
But things changed during the IPL as Bumrah has gained good form in IPL. He is the leading wicket-taker of IPL with 27 wickets in just 15 matches. Whenever the captain hands him the ball, he picks up wickets and breaks crucial partnerships.
Bumrah back in form is a sigh of relief for the Indian cricket team ahead of the Australia tour.
Shami has been sensational with his brilliant bowling performances in the IPL. He trained a lot in the lockdown, and he never looked out of rhythm even in the initial matches of the IPL.
Earlier, there were speculations made that Shami was more of an ODI and test bowler as he leaks a lot of runs in the death overs in T20 matches.
But he has worked on his variations and yorkers this season, which shows in the wicket-taking column.
He has taken 20 wickets in 14 matches, and his impactful performance came against Mumbai Indians, where he defended five runs in a super over by bowling all six yorker-length deliveries.
He will be playing in the Australia tour in all three formats and is the premier bowling option alongside Jasprit Bumrah.
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