We are in the 15th edition of the Indian Premier League. Just like any other season, IPL 2022 has lived up to its expectations. The addition of two new teams, Gujarat Titans and Lucknow Super Giants has only increased the tournament’s popularity. The debutants have been excellent this season, claiming the first and second spot respectively. On the other hand, seasoned teams such as Chennai Super Kings and Mumbai Indians are languishing in the bottom 2.
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Top 5 teams of the IPL so far
To everyone’s surprise teams such as Punjab Kings, Rajasthan Royals and Sunrisers Hyderabad have made it to the top 5 teams along with debutants Gujarat Titans and Lucknow Super Giants. Punjab and Rajasthan had a pretty decent auction, but experts ruled out Hyderabad after the auctions which makes their entry into the top half of the table even more surprising.
Gujrat Titans (GT)
With 8 wins in 10 games, Gujarat Titans have certainly raised eyebrows. They also have a good net run rate of +0.158. The journey looked steep for the Titans, being a new franchise led by a player who does not have captaincy experience but they have flourished. The biggest positive for Gujarat has been that some or the other player has stepped up and won them the game. Hardik Pandya has shown immense maturity, both as captain and player. So far, the only drawback of this team is their reliance on individual performances.
Lucknow Super Giants (LSG)
This season looks to be gracing the debutants. After Gujarat Titans, Lucknow Super Giants take 2nd spot on the points table. In 10 games, the Super Giants have won 7 with a net run rate of +0.397. Post-auction, the Lucknow franchise looked one of the strongest on papers and they have stood upon those expectations. Openers KL Rahul and De Kock have been in great form. Middle-order batsmen such as Deepak Hooda and Ayush Badoni have given consistent performances as well. All-rounders, Krunal Pandya, and Jason Holder have also given match-winning performances. Bowlers such as Ravi Bishnoi and Avesh Khan are expected to do better and are the weak points of this team.
Rajasthan Royals (RR)
Coach Kumar Sangakarra and captain Sanju Samson have given the Rajasthan franchise a new life. A team that has never tasted success since the inaugural IPL edition looks in a decent position to win it this year. In 10 games, Rajasthan have won 6 with a net run rate of +0.340. Jos Buttler has stood out. The Orange Cap holder has scored 588 runs which include 3 centuries. Chahal has also been excellent for his new franchise, claiming 19 wickets and the Purple Cap. Rajasthan’s middle order has not clicked for them yet, with only a few good knocks by Riyan Parag. Samson also hasn’t shown his true potential as a batsman.
Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB)
Royal Challengers Bangalore is having another dicey season. Almost every year they put in the best possible team on paper but somehow fail to deliver on the pitch. The two-time finalists are yet to win a trophy and this year the chances look slim as well. In 11 games, they have won 6 with a net run rate of -0.444. Their biggest strength has been Dinesh Karthik’s form. Karthik has been predominantly given the role of a finisher and he has executed it to perfection. Harshal Patel and Faf du Plessis have made valuable contributions as well. However, their biggest concern would be megastar Virat Kohli’s form. The batsman is having a poor season and shall be looking to change things in the remaining games. If Virat Kohli manages to find form, there is no stopping RCB
Sunrisers Hyderabad (SRH)
The most unexpected entry, if they make it to the play-offs would be Sunrisers Hyderabad. They retained Kane Williamson and the inexperienced duo of Abhishek Sharma and Umran Malik. In 9 games, the team has won 5 with a net run rate of +0.471. Sunrisers’ biggest positives have been the form of players such as Rahul Tripathi, Umran Malik and Aiden Markram. Hyderabad would be expecting their openers to give them a good start on a consistent basis even though there have been decent performances by both their openers- Abhishek Sharma and Kane Williamson. Bhuvneshwar Kumar also needs to give better performances for Sunrisers to maintain their position in the top 4.
Is there hope for any of the remaining 5 teams?
Amongst the teams which are on the bottom half of the table, Delhi Capitals have the strongest chance of making it to the top 4. The Delhi squad is phenomenal and filled with match-winners. They have been unlucky with their foreign players which have derailed them. The late arrival of David Warner and Mitchell Marsh and then the covid scare of the latter. Their strike bowler Nortje is out due to injury as well. With Marsh back in the squad, the Capitals have been handed a big boost. Delhi still looks good with 8 points in 9 games and might still make it.
IPL 2022 Winner Prediction
Lucknow Super Giants have a very good chance to win the IPL title. They could be the first-ever team to win the tournament in its debut season (not considering RR’s 2008 since it was IPL’s first season as well). They have an excellent squad which is filled with quality all-rounders. KL Rahul has been in great form too and shows no signs of stopping. Two-time winner Gautam Gambhir’s mentorship will give the team an additional boost.