IPL is known for its power-hitting, but the bowlers are equally at par with the batsmen. They deceive them with their various stock balls, making it difficult for them to adjust to the pace, bounce, and find gaps in the field.
The concept of Purple Cap that is to award the bowler with highest wickets in the season boosts the latter to perform better and pulls up their skills.
Here are the top 8 contenders for the Purple Cap this year, one from each team.
DELHI CAPITALS – Kagiso Rabada
Having won the IPL Purple Cap in its last edition, Kagiso Rabada is surely someone to watch out for.
Even though the UAE’s pitches were not seen to be assisting the pacers, Rabada still made the most of it by bagging 30 wickets in 17 matches. These are the most number of IPL wickets by a Purple Cap Winner, only second to Dwayne Bravo, who took 32 in the 2013 season. In 2019, the right arm pacer took 25 wickets, only one less than his Proteas teammate, Imran Tahir– the Purple Cap winner for that year.
CHENNAI SUPER KINGS – Shardul Thakur
After proving his skills as a crucial wicket-taking bowler when the opposition was looking to accelerate and making them fall, Shardul Thakur has yet another chance here to prove his skills.
Under the leadership of MS Dhoni, who stunts the opposition’s growth in the death overs, Thakur can come in handy to his team.
Though Shardul doesn’t boast a great track record in the IPL because he hasn’t played many matches in the past few seasons, this edition can be the turning point in his IPL career.
SUNRISERS HYDERABAD – Bhuvneshwar Kumar
Among the current genuine Indian swing bowlers, Bhuvneshwar Kumar tops the list.
In the recently concluded India vs England series, he was the ice-breaker for Team India in the powerplay where his ball did the talking.
Kumar boasts a great track record in the previous IPLs, winning the Purple Cap consecutively for two years in the 2016 and 2017 season.
Though a bout of injuries road blocked his career in 2019, he has bounced back stronger and well in time.
MUMBAI INDIANS – Jasprit Bumrah
Known for his unorthodox action and deadly yorkers, Jasprit Bumrah is another bowler who can turn the tables when needed.
In the last year’s IPL, he took 27 wickets in 15 matches, only three behind Kagiso Rabada, who won the Purple Cap.
The trust that Mumbai Indians’ (MI) captain has on Bumrah is parallel to none. With the use of wrist and generating power with his shoulders, he is a bowler to watch out.
KOLKATA KNIGHT RIDERS – Pat Cummins
Pat Cummins’ speciality is that he has been effective in the international level both in Tests and shorter formats of the game. He finished 2019 with the most international wickets (59) leaving Stuart Broad (43), the next in the list far behind.
Though he hasn’t had a great IPL till now, what differentiates him, from the members of his pack, is that he concentrates on taking wickets through his field placements rather than going for the orthodox LBWs and clean bowled dismissals and yet is equally effective.
With Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) in genuine need of a good IPL, Cummins can rise to the occasion and prove his worth in the league.
RAJASTHAN ROYALS – Chris Morris
Sold as the costliest player for 16.25 crores this IPL season, Rajasthan Royals (RR) have acquired a gem.
Overall, Morris has bagged 80 wickets in 70 matches at a strike rate of only 18.42 and an eye-catching average of 23.98.
Classified as a T20 specialist by many, the lethal pacer has single-handedly won matches for his national side, South Africa.
While he could only play nine matches for Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) in the previous season, he left no stone unturned in building pressure on the opposition batsmen by just giving a few runs at a commendable economy rate of 6.63.
Battling his way through injuries, RR will be hoping that Morris plays all the matches for them.
ROYAL CHALLENGERS BANGALORE – Yuzvendra Chahal
Yuzvendra Chahal, the leg spinner, is known all around the world for his variations. Having both top-spin and googly, he can be a deceptive bowler who lures the batsman with his flight.
Also, a chess player previously, the leggie has both skills and brain to trick the batsmen and give them a hard time at the crease.
Last year in IPL, he took 21 wickets in 15 matches at an average of only 19.28 and an economy rate of just over 7, making him the highest wicket-taker for Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) and at the 5th position overall.
PUNJAB KINGS – Mohammed Shami
With the ability to swing the ball both ways at lethal speeds of above 140 kmph, Mohammed Shami needs no introduction.
Once termed as the breakthrough bowler for India, his pace and accuracy is something to watch.
Taking 20 wickets for his team Kings XI Punjab (now Punjab Kings) in IPL 2020 made him the highest wicket-taker for his franchise and 8th overall in the list of Purple Cap contenders.
In the 12th season of IPL, he took 19 scalps at an economy rate of 8.68 and an average of 24.68. He maintained his consistency by taking 20 wickets in the 13th season at an economy of 8.57 and a slightly better average of 23.00.