The 2023 Indian Premier League (IPL) season is just 2 days away with Chennai Super Kings taking on defending Champions Gujarat Titans in the opening match to be played at Narendra Modi Stadium, Ahmedabad on 31 March.
Since the inception of the Indian Premier League in 2008, Orange Cap has been awarded to the batter with the most runs in the tournament. Shaun Marsh of Kings XI Punjab won first ever Orange Cap during the 2008 season with 616 runs from 11 matches.
Chris Gayle won the Orange Cap award twice in successive years including 2011 and 2012 for Royal Challengers Bangalore. David Warner was the leading run-getter for IPL in 2015, 2017, and 2019 for Sunrisers Hyderabad. Virat Kohli won this award in 2016 with 973 runs for RCB.
KL Rahul won this award in 2020 for Kings XI Punjab before Ruturaj Gaikwad won the Orange Cap in 2021 for CSK. Jos Buttler won the Orange Cap award last year for Rajasthan Royals.
There are various top-quality batters in this year’s IPL with the ability to play long innings and help their team to post big totals.
Here we look at the 5 players who could win the Orange Cap in IPL 2023
- Jos Buttler
Jos Buttler finished as the leading run-getter in the Indian Premier League 2022. He opened the innings for Rajasthan Royals. It was an amazing performance by the explosive England opener with 863 runs from 17 matches (17 innings) including 4 centuries and 4 half-centuries, at a strike rate of 149.05.
During last year’s IPL, Buttler demonstrated hitting abilities right from the word go and kept the pressure on bowlers. He played according to the situation ensuring that Rajasthan Royals posted or chase down targets.
Buttler registered the highest score of 116 against Delhi Capitals with an average of 57.53. He will be important for Rajasthan Royals to provide a flying start to the team in the first six overs and keep the momentum going to help them win matches with his explosive batting.
- Shubman Gill
Shubman Gill had a dream season for Gujarat Titans in the 2022 IPL. He looked composed with his style of batting and played according to the situation.
Gill scored 483 runs from 16 matches ( 16 innings) with 4 half-centuries to his name. With the current form he possesses, he will be a key for Gujarat Titans this season also. During last year’s IPL, Gill registered a score of 96 against Punjab Kings and an average of 34.50.
Despite his slow strike of 132.32, Gill was solid enough despite the loss of early wickets. His performance at the top of the order will determine how Gujarat Titans will fare in the season.
- Virat Kohli
Virat Kohli will play a key role for Royal Challengers Bangalore this season. He might open the innings along with Faf du Plessis. In the recent few months, Kohli has been in brilliant form for the Indian team across all formats with 2 centuries against Sri Lanka in One-day internationals, a brilliant knock against Pakistan in T20 World Cup in 2022, and then well complied century against Australia in 1st innings of the fourth Test match at Ahmedabad.
Kohli struggled in the initial matches but showed some glimpses of form in the latter half. He scored 341 runs from 16 matches (16 innings) including 2 half-centuries with a strike rate of 115.98. King Kohli registered his best of 73 against Gujarat Titans at an average of 22.73.
If Kohli can provide the way he performed in the 2016 edition, then Royal Challengers Bangalore franchise could win their maiden IPL title.
- Quinton de Kock
The explosive South African batter will miss initial matches for Lucknow Super Giants due to national duty as Proteas would face Netherlands in 2 Super League matches which is a direct qualification for the ICC World Cup 2023. De Kock showed his attacking abilities with a sensational century against West Indies in the 2nd T20I match on 26 March played at SuperSport Park, Centurion chasing down a mammoth total of 259.
De Kock was in sensational form for Lucknow Super Giants last year. He showed attacking abilities in the first six overs and put bowlers under immense pressure. The South African batter finished as the 3rd leading run-getter in IPL 2022 with 508 runs from 15 matches (15 innings) with 1 century and 3 half-centuries to his name at a strike rate of 148.97.
He opened the innings along with KL Rahul and kept the momentum going for the Lucknow Super Giants team. De Kock made an unbeaten 140 against Kolkata Knight Riders.
After coming back from national duty, the Lucknow Super Giants franchise would be hoping de Kock continues his superb form and helps LSG to provide the same type of starts along with KL Rahul.
- Prithvi Shaw
Prithvi Shaw is another attacking opener and will be eager to showcase his aggressive abilities for Delhi Capitals. He has been in sensational form of late in the domestic season including the Syed Mushtaq Ali Trophy, Vijay Hazare, and Ranji Trophy held during 2022/23.
He did not had a great season in 2022 with 283 runs from 10 matches ( 10 innings) with only 2 half-centuries to his name. Shaw provided aggressive starts along with David Warner and kept Delhi Capitals ahead of the game. His best score in the tournament was 61 against Lucknow Super Giants.
The opener would be looking to showcase his real talent this season and hope to bring glory to Delhi Capitals. He scored at a strike rate of 152.97 but did not play the full quota of matches last year.
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