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Flops of IPL 2018

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Flops_IPL_2018_CricketTwenty20 cricket can be unforgiving, as it does not give out of form players the time to settle down and get back to their best. A game can be lost in the course of a single over, and in each edition of the IPL there are some players with big reputations who fail to live up to their high billing.

No matter how storied the reputation of the player, if he doesn’t perform he is dropped by the franchise. There is no room for sentiment; only performance counts for the franchise owners. Here are 10 players who didn’t live up to their reputations and were big flops in the tournament.

Yuvraj Singh - KXIP

It was sad to see one of the most exciting T20 players of all time struggle to get the ball off the square. Yuvraj Singh seemed to be caught in two minds as to whether to play himself in or go after the bowling. He suffered the ignominy of being dropped from the side due to repeated failures.

In a couple of matches, even Axar Patel was promoted ahead of him which would have been unthinkable in the past. He scored 65 runs at a strike rate of 89.04 and his highest score was just 20. It might be the end of an illustrious career.

Ben Stokes - RR

He was the most expensive pick in the 2018 auction due to his stupendous performances in the 2017 edition and his growing stature as an international all-rounder. However, his fracas outside a Bristol nightclub and subsequent enforced absence meant that he lost his mojo. Scott Styris pointed out that he lost some on-field aggression and in your face attitude, which led to diminished performances in the 2018 edition.

He scored just 196 runs at 16.33 and a strike rate of 121.73 and did not score even a single fifty. Even with the ball, his much-vaunted ability to provide crucial breakthroughs was lacking and he took just 8 wickets at 37.87.

Aaron Finch - KXIP

He missed his team’s first game due to his wedding but was unable to make an impact in any of the matches he played. He was out for 2 golden ducks and seemed unable to pick the spinners and get any kind of momentum in his innings.

This was the 7th IPL team he was playing for which shows that he is highly rated but his performances in this tournament left a lot to be desired. He seemed to be finding some form near the end of the tournament but it was a case of too little, too late.

He was one of the main reasons for KXIP’s misfiring middle order and KXIP’s stubbornness in persisting with him while keeping David Miller on the bench was inexplicable. Finch scored 134 runs in 10 matches at just 16.75.

Colin Munro - DD

Munro has the most T20I centuries (3) and the 2nd best batting strike rate (163.59) of all 43 batsmen who have scored a minimum of 1,000 T20I runs. In this edition, he failed to perform to his potential and was dropped after a few games to give Jason Roy a chance.

He made a comeback in the latter stages of the tournament but couldn’t replicate his international form in the IPL. He played just 5 matches and scored 63 runs at 12.6. The poor form of DD’s foreign players was the main reason for their poor show in the tournament.

Gautam Gambhir - DD

Gambhir led KKR with distinction in the previous few seasons and so was selected by DD for his leadership skills, to try and turn around the fortunes of the franchise. However, he struggled to get going and voluntarily relinquished the captaincy after a few matches as his personal form was poor.

His decision was a brave one but his form with the bat was disappointing. He scored 85 runs at just 17 and a horrendous strike rate of 96.59. His 75, which propelled India to the 2007 WT20 final, seems like a lifetime ago and like Yuvraj, this might be his last IPL.

Kieron Pollard – MI

Pollard has played for MI for the last 9 seasons and has won many matches for them with his adventurous batting and acrobatic fielding, while chipping in with some useful overs of medium pace. He struggled to get going in this edition and was dropped from the side to accommodate JP Duminy at the halfway stage.

He made a comeback during the latter stages and scored 50 off 23 balls against KXIP but that was his only noteworthy performance. His dismissal at a crucial time in MI’s last encounter of the tournament against DD was the nail in the coffin of MI.

Mayank Agarwal - KXIP

At 27, Mayank is no spring chicken but has been knocking on the door of the Indian team with his consistent performances in domestic cricket for the last couple of years. He was one of the misfiring players in KXIP’s middle order and struggled to get going.

He lacked a bit of game awareness and was out first ball hooking Andre Russell against KKR when a more prudent approach would have served him better. He scored just 120 runs at a measly average of 12 and has slipped down the pecking order in Indian cricket.

Glenn Maxwell – DD

He was bought for an astronomical Rs.9 crore but failed to live up to his reputation. When he is at his best, Maxwell is a bowler’s nightmare as he scores runs all around the park and manufactures shots aimed at the gaps in the field.

He played in 12 of the 13 games he was available for but scored just 169 runs at 14.08. With the ball, he took 5 wickets but conceded runs at 8.25. His fielding though was top class, but DD missed a trick by not giving Jason Roy and even Munro more chances at his expense.

Jaydev Unadkat - RR

He was the costliest Indian player in the auction, going for Rs.11.5 crores as he was the 2nd highest wicket taker in IPL 2017. His 2018 performances turned out to be an anti-climax. He tended to overuse the slower delivery, which meant that batsmen could wait for it. His profligate bowling and lack of breakthroughs were the main reasons behind RR not progressing past the Eliminator. He took 11 wickets at an extremely high average of 44.18 and an economy rate of 9.65. All in all, it was a forgettable season for him.

Mitchell Johnson – KKR

In the Ashes and in South Africa, Johnson has terrorized batsmen with sheer pace and an extremely accurate short ball. Here, he was way past his best and was unable to bowl at the pace he generated during his pomp.

He lacked his usual venom and his line and length were all over the place. Johnson was dropped from the playing XI after 6 games, taking just 2 wickets at an abysmal average of 108 and an economy rate of 10.28.

 

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