IPL 2020 has provided a spectacle, so far, with some stellar and memorable performances ever since it kick-started on September 19. Rahul Tewatia's superlative performance with the bat during the highest successful chase in IPL history; sparks of brilliance from youngsters like Ravi Bishnoi, Ruturaj Gaikwad and Devdutt Padikkal the tournament has seen it all. But as the league stage ended, one is yet to see consistent performances from most of the highest-paid cricketers. In fact, like every other season, the highest-paid cricketers, have failed to make noteworthy contributions for their franchises. Let’s take stock of all the hits and misses we’ve witnessed so far:
Players who failed to justify their paycheque:
Glenn Maxwell (10.75 crores)
The Kings XI Punjab signed Maxwell on a Rs 10.75 crore contract, hoping the Australian all-rounder would provide plenty of fireworks in the middle order throughout the IPL 2020. However, Maxwell failed to live up to the expectations as he scored only 108 runs in 13 appearances during the tournament, boasting a high score of 32. Maxwell proved to be the 'flop of the season' and his poor performance was one of the reasons behind KXIP's early exit from IPL 2020.
Sheldon Cottrell (8.5 crores)
Sheldon Cottrell is another Kings XI Punjab overseas star who failed to live up to the price tag. Cottrell was bought for Rs 8.5 crore by the Punjab based franchise to aid Mohammed Shami as a perfect partner with the new ball. However, Cottrell had a rather forgettable outing as he could take only six wickets in the six matches he played before getting dropped. Cottrell leaked 176 runs in six matches and hit rock bottom after being smashed for five sixes in an over by Rahul Tewatia.
Shimron Hetmyer (7.75 crores)
Shimron Hetmyer, who was signed by the Delhi Capitals for Rs 7.75 crore, has failed to make an impact in the middle order for Shreyas Iyer's team. Hetmyer has failed to score big with only 138 runs at an ordinary average of 19.71 in the 9 innings to his name in IPL 2020.
Nathan Coulter-Nile (8 crores)
Mumbai Indians' new recruit Nathan Coulter-Nile was unavailable for the first seven matches due to an injury that he picked before the start of IPL 2020. Coulter-Nile had a forgettable outing on his return from injury as he managed to snap only 3 wickets in the 3 matches he played.
Players with contrasting form throughout IPL 2020
Pat Cummins (15.5 crores)
Pat Cummins, the IPL’s most expensive player this season at Rs 15.5 crores, had gone wicketless in six of seven games before claiming 3-17 against Delhi Capitals. Australia pacer backed that by taking 4-34 in Kolkata’s 60-run win over Rajasthan Royals, confirming his return to form as the tournament’s playoff race begins to intensify. Cummins has also scored 146 runs and strengthened KKR's lower middle order.
Marcus Stoinis (4.8 crores)
Marcus Stoinis is the sole all-rounder to feature in all 12 games for Delhi Capitals. Marcus Stoinis enjoyed a rousing first six games of the season: 162 runs at a strike rate above 175 with two fifties, plus five wickets at 9.50 per over. In six subsequent outings, Stoinis has failed to impress with just 75 runs (strike rate 119) and three wickets (economy 10.40).
Chris Morris (10 crores)
After missing out on the initial phase of the tournament, Chris Morris provided the balance that Virat Kohli’s team was seeking desperately. Despite just featuring in eight matches, South African all-rounder has made significant contributions to his team in both departments of the game. Morris has picked 11 wickets at an impressive average of 17.36
Rookie stars who proved value for money
Ravi Bishnoi (2 crores)
Ravi Bishnoi earned an IPL contract on the back of a superb showing in the ICC U19 World Cup earlier this year, and he has certainly enhanced reputation through his impressive performances for KXIP. Bishnoi has been the pick of the entire crop of rookies this season as he scalped 12 wickets in IPL 2020 with a decent economy of 7.37 in 14 appearances. More than his wicket-taking abilities, it is Bishnoi’s calmness under pressure which is most impressive.
Devdutt Padikkal (20 lakh)
Devdutt Padikkal has been at the forefront of RCB’s success, scoring 422 runs from 13 matches, next only to captain Virat Kohli. Padikkal had become only the second uncapped Indian player to register 400-plus runs in his maiden IPL season. Notably, Padikkal was with RCB in 2019 also but did not get to play a single game as he watched his team crumble from the sidelines.
Ruturaj Gaikwad (20 lakh)
Ruturaj Gaikwad had a roller-coaster IPL 2020 season. Things did not look bright for him after he failed in his first 3 innings (0, 5, 0). But maybe CSK's skipper MS Dhoni's comment about “youngsters lacking the spark” became an elixir for him. He turned the season by scoring 199 runs in the final three games of IPL 2020. Gaikwad had scored his first fifty against Royal Challengers Bangalore as he scored an unbeaten 65 to help CSK to a 9-wicket win. He followed it up with a 72-run knock against KKR that helped CSK script a thrilling 6-wicket win. And in the final league match, Gaikwad capped his form with another brisk fifty, to help his team finish the season on a high.