Indian players ruling the roost in IPL
While the Indian Premier League (IPL) franchisees may splurge on recruiting foreign imports, it's the Indian players who are ruling the roost -- from topping the batting charts to being the most successful captain.
The top four run getters since the cricket jamboree began in 2008 are all from India. Chennai Super Kings' (CSK) batting mainstay Suresh Raina tops the chart with 2254 runs at an average of 33.64.
Close on Raina's heels are Kolkata Knight Riders' (KKR) skipper Gautam Gambhir (2065) and batting maestro from Mumbai Indians (MI) Sachin Tendulkar, who has amassed 2047 from 64 innings.
However, the toast of the Indians is CSK skipper Mahendra Singh Dhoni, who with 78 matches has not only captained in most games but is also the most successful captain with a win percentage of 60 and two IPL crowns to boast.
The Indians captaining their sides have also been hogging the limelight as batsmen. KKR skipper Gambhir with 2065 runs is the highest run getter as a captain followed by Dhoni who has scored 1783 runs having a strike rate of 136.52 which is only second best to Kings XI skipper Adam Gilchrist who has a strike rate of 140.20.
The Indian are also giving a run for their money to their foreign counterparts in the bowling department with as many as four desi bowlers among the top five wicket takers.
While MI's Sri Lankan import Lasith Malinga with 83 scalps tops the chart, closely following him are four Indians -- Delhi Daredevils' leggie Amit Mishra and MI's Rudra Pratap Singh with 74 wickets each, Kings XI Punjab spinner Piyush Chawla (73) and Munaf Patel of Rajasthan Royals (RR), who has taken 70 wickets.
Though not considered among the best for their fielding abilities, the Indians are also shining in the field with MI's Rohit Sharma and CSK's Raina having 42 pouches each, to become the highest catchers in the high-profile league.
However, when it comes to scoring centuries, the Indians have been outshone by the overseas players, who have scored 15 of the total 24 hundreds.
Royal Challengers' Caribbean import Chris Gayle (three) has the most number of centuries to his credit followed by Delhi Daredevil's Aussie David Warner and CSK's homespun hero Murali Vijay with two each.
KKR's New Zealand recruit Brendon McCullum holds the record for the highest individual innings score, courtesy an unbeaten 158 in the maiden game of the tourney in 2008.
But the record for the fastest century rests with an Indian - Yusuf Pathan. Now a KKR player, he had blasted a 37 ball 100 while playing for RR against MI in the third edition of the IPL.