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Monday, May 30, 2022

Gujarat Titans wins IPL 2022 - fastest delivery of IPL `15

The biggest Cricketing extravaganza – Indian Premier League 2022 (IPL 15) is just over.  From 26th Mar 2022 till yesterday there were 74 matches – interesting and so many nail-baiting finishes. 

Usain Bolt put Jamaica on top of the world with his prowess in sprint race .. .. back in 2008 at Beijing – a confident crew of sprinters from Jamaica became the first nation in Olympic history to sweep the gold, silver and bronze in the event when Shelly-Ann Fraser finished in 10.78 seconds, followed by teammates Sherone Simpson and Kerron Stewart, both at 10.98. Speed is always alluring!

What a match it turned out to be – and the cynosure of all eyes was GT Captain – who had not  delivered a single ball over his last two seasons at Mumbai Indians. It was remarkable, Hardik Pandya performed at  Ahmedabad, in front of a crowd of 104,859 - possibly the largest ever to watch a game of cricket.  He had marshalled his resources extremely well, led from the front, has been a great fielder and big pinch hitter, this time – it was he, with the ball – dismissing 3 of the dangerous batters of RR.  In seven seasons for Mumbai in the IPL, Hardik had scored his runs at a strike rate of 153.91. He had hit a six every 9.8 balls, and had hit more sixes (98) than fours (97).  For Gujarat Titans, as Captains, he was better and different -   487 runs at an average of 44.27 and a strike rate of 131.26. He had hit 12 sixes - one every 30.9 balls - and 49 fours.

Hardik seemed to be knowing everyone in the ground – smiled, waved hands, shook hands, hugged some .. .. .. and was friendly with everyone – in fact after a caught and bowl, he ran towards his mates and exchanged a friendly banter with leg Umpire – and one among the many was Varun Aaron- a man who was bowling so fast.   In  ‘what could be the fastest ball in India of that time ’ @ 153 kmph was  delivered by Varun Aaron from Jharkhand in front of literally empty stadium in a Vijay Hazare final.  The  fastest Indian  perhaps could be  – Kapil Dev, TA Sekhar, Yograj Singh, Varun Aaron, Javgal Srinath, Jasprit Bumrah,  Navdeep Saini, Ishant Sharma !!! .. and now Umran Malik  and couple of new finds.  Internationally –  Jeff Thomson, Dennis Lillee,  Andy Roberts, Malcolm Marshall, Michael Holding, Fidel Edwards, Shane Bond, Shaun Tait, Shoaib Akhtar, Brett Lee, Allan Donald  or the likes of Harold Larwood, Frank Tyson.. .. ..  there is also another,  most of us may not know – Charles Kortright

Charles Jesse Kortright (1871 – 1952)   was an English cricketer, who played for Essex and Free Foresters. In his obituary in the 1953 edition of Wisden Cricketers' Almanack, he was described as "probably the fastest bowler in the history of the game", a testimony fervently supported by countless of those who saw and faced him.


Debutant franchise Gujarat Titans scripted history in the Indian Premier League on Sunday night when they won IPL 2022 in their inaugural season by seven wickets against Rajasthan Royals in the final in Ahmedabad. With the victory, came the hefty prize money of Rs 20 crore during the post-final award ceremony. During the high-profile encounter, right-arm fast bowler Lockie Ferguson clocked the fastest ball of this season when he bowled at 157.3 kmph to RR batter Jos Buttler.In the last ball of the fifth over of RR’s innings, Ferguson bowled a pin-point yorker outside the off stump to Buttler, leaving him stunned with the speed as the ball passed him and settled into Wriddhiman Saha’s hands.

With this thunderbolt, Ferguson not only won the fastest delivery of the match award but also went past Sunrisers Hyderabad speedster Umran Malik, who had earlier clocked a 157 kmph delivery against the Delhi Capitals during a group stage match this IPL. Ferguson  took home Rs 10 lakh for registering the fastest delivery of the entire tournament. Lockie Ferguson has a reputation for bowling fast and also crossed the 150 kmph mark on a number of occasions this IPL season.

RR, who reached the final for the first time since winning the tournament in the inaugural IPL edition in 2008got  Rs 12.5 crore. Third-placed Royal Challengers Bangalore, who lost by seven wickets to RR in Qualifier 2, received a cheque of Rs 7 crore while fourth-placed Lucknow Super Giants received Rs 6.5 crore after going down to RCB in the Eliminator. Royals and Titans also were the joint winners of the Fairplay Award with both teams having an average of 10 points per match.

RR had more honours to claim on the night as their star batter of the tournament, Jos Buttler, who also contributed the team's highest score of the day with a 39-run innings, claimed the Orange Capwith an aggregate of 863 runs, which was more than 250 runs ahead of second-best KL Rahul (616). The 31-year-old Englishman earned a cheque of Rs 10 lakh along with the cap. Purple cap, along with a cheque of Rs 10 lakh, went to RR's Yuzvendra Chahal, who finished the season with 27 wickets.  Jos Butler backed   multiple awards such as the Most Valuable Player of the Season award, Most sixes in the season award, Game Changer of the Season award, Most Fours in the Season Award, and Powerplayer of the Season award. In total, Buttler grabbed Rs 60 lakh in the season's prize money with each award fetching Rs 10 lakh.

In other individual awards, LSG' Evin Lewis won the Best Catch of the Season award as his one-handed blinder against Kolkata Knight Riders booked their play-off spot. The West Indian received a cheque of Rs 10 lakh.  Umran Malik, won the Emerging Player of the Season award (Rs 10 lakh).RCB's  Dinesh Karthik grabbed the Super Striker Award for finishing the season with a strike rate of 183.33 and won a TATA Punch car in the award ceremony.

We have been so used to watching IPL matches everyday, and what would the Nation do from tonight !! – missing IPL !!

With regards – S. Sampathkumar
30th May 2022. 

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