4. AB DE VILLIERS (RCB)
Known around the world for his ability to put the bowlers to the sword every time he steps on the field, Abraham Benjamin de Villiers did his reputation a tonne of good by clocking up 687 runs from 16 games at an imposing average of 52.84 and at a strike rate of 168.79 for RCB this season. Instrumental in RCB’s dramatic upsurge at the business end of the tournament, the Protea ODI and Test skipper lent admirable support to captain Virat Kohli umpteen times during the tournament and ended up finishing third on the leading run-scorers list. On 14th May 2016, de Villiers brought up his first century of IPL 2016 and third ton of his IPL career as he clobbered 10 fours and 12 sixes en route to 129* off 52 balls against Gujarat Lions at the M. Chinnaswamy Stadium in Bangalore. He shared a 2nd wicket stand worth 229 runs Virat Kohli,to which the latter contributed 100 runs. Riding on the back of centuries from these two star players, RCB drubbed Gujarat Lions by 144 runs in a lop-sided clash. He perished for just 5 runs in the all-important final against SRH. Who knows? A prolonged stay in the middle could have tilted the scales in favour of the home side.
The 32-year old also brought his terrific fielding skills to the fore, nabbing 19 catches in 16 games which won him the award for the ‘fielder of the tournament’. Amusingly, his closest competitor David Miller trails him by 9 catches in this regard.
Here’s hoping his prolific partnership with Kohli yields rich dividend for this side as well.
Stats- Matches 16, Runs 687, HS 129*, N.O 3, Avg.- 52.84, S/R- 168.79, 1 hundred, 6 fifties.