The 'Orange Cap' is of great value in the IPL © IANS & AFP
The ‘Orange Cap’ is of great value in the IPL © IANS & AFP

As we all know, the highly popular Twenty20 (T20) league in the world, the Indian Premier League (IPL) is mostly popular for its glamour and the big cricketing stars, who feature from all over the world. Moreover, with the T20 format, it is all about scoring runs, which more or less makes it a batsman’s game. In addition, as far as scoring runs is concerned, the one thing the batsmen and the fans look up to, is the batsman scoring the most runs in the tournament. The reason for its importance is that not only it earns them recognition, and a possible call-up to their respective national squads, but it earns them the ‘Orange Cap’, which is of great value in the tournament. IPL 2017: Afghanistan duo, leg-spinners and other talking points that made the season special

The 10th edition of the cash-rich league has just concluded, and once again we have an orange cap holder, who scored the most runs this year. However, it is not just that batsman we are talking about; we would be talking about all the 10 batsmen, who have received the prestigious honour of the tournament till date in the past 10 seasons. We start things right from the inception of the tournament back in 2008.

The inaugural edition in 2008 saw Australia’s Shaun Marsh receiving the honour, who was phenomenal with the bat playing for Kings XI Punjab (KXIP), as he scored 616 runs from the 11 matches, at an average of 51 and a strike rate of 140, which included five half-centuries, and a ton, as his highest score was 115. Although KXIP failed to win the title, they managed to qualify for the semi-finals, losing to Chennai Super Kings (CSK), while Rajasthan Royals (RR) won the final.

The next season saw former Australian legend Matthew Hayden claiming the honour, who was indeed one of the fine performers of the tournament, and was backed immensely by many cricketing fans around the world to come out on top. With the tournament being held in South Africa, he managed to score 572 runs from the 12 matches he played, along with an average of 52 and a strike rate of 145.60, including five half-centuries, while his highest score was 89. Being a powerful hitter and an explosive opener for years for Australia, he was one of the perfect candidates for the ‘Orange Cap’. Although his team CSK failed to qualify for the final, after being ousted in the semi-final by Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB), his contributions made CSK one of the most successful and consistent sides in the tournament. IPL 10: A fanatic’s honest review

The third year saw what most of the Indian cricket fans had been waiting for. It was none other than the Master Blaster and India’s cricketing legend of the modern game, Sachin Tendulkar claiming the honour. Sachin, who retired early from Twenty20 Internationals (T20Is) after playing just one game against South Africa in 2006, was still backed as one of the best players to be suited for the format. Although, he hardly managed to fire in the opening two editions, the third season saw a whole new Sachin in the T20 format, as he scored 618 runs from the 15 matches he played for Mumbai Indians (MI), where he averaged around 48 and had a strike rate of 133, along with five half-centuries, and a top score of an unbeaten 89. It was certainly a treat for the fans to see their greatest legend claiming the greatest honour of the tournament. However, they would have been happier, had MI won the title, as they lost in the final to CSK.

The fourth season saw a surprise. After having an average opening three seasons with the Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR), the big Jamaican Chris Gayle, who shockingly went unsold during the IPL 2011 Auction and was later roped in by RCB, where he made tremendous impact, and made a huge name for himself. His powerful hitting followed by consistent performance and flow of runs allowed him to become the top run-scorer of the season, therefore making him the ‘Orange Cap’ recipient. He scored 608 runs in the 12 matches he played, along with an average of 68 and a strike rate of 183, which included three half-centuries and a couple of centuries, while his highest score was 107. Gayle went on to become one of the most famous and watched out players in the tournament thereon. However, his success fell short in the season, after his team failed to win the final against CSK.

Infohraphic Courtesy - Jyoti Desale
Infographics by Jyoti Desale

However, the Gayle juggernaut did not just stop in the fourth season, as the same story continued the very next season as well, where he once again had the honour of winning the ‘Orange Cap’ as he scored massive 733 runs from 14 games, along with an average of 61 and a strike rate of 161, including seven half-centuries and a ton, while his highest score was 128. This indeed cemented Gayle’s legacy in the tournament, as he became one of the most watched out performers of the tournament, which additionally also increased an immense fan base for the RCB. Nevertheless, it was an overall disappointing season for RCB as they managed to finish on the fifth spot, failing to qualify for the playoffs.

The sixth season saw an Australian grab the honour and he did it with style. It was none other than ‘Mr. Cricket’ himself from Australia, as Michael Hussey played a commendable season for CSK. He finished with massive 733 runs from the 17 matches he played, at an average of 52 and a strike rate of 130, which included six half-centuries, while his highest score was 95. Hussey clearly dominated the bowlers, making him one of the most watched batsmen of the IPL 2013. However, he failed to guide his team to a record third title as they lost the final to Mumbai Indians (MI).

The seventh season saw the second Indian ever to claim the honour, as it was Robin Uthappa, who did so while playing for Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR). It also turned out to be his breakthrough season, as he went on to become one of the fine performers in the IPL, and for KKR. He scored 660 runs in the 16 matches he played, at 44 and a strike rate of 138, which included five half-centuries, while his highest score was 83. Owing to this performance of his, he was also widely being considered for getting back to the Indian side, which unfortunately did not happen. However, he was successful in guiding his team to their second title win.

The eighth season saw another fellow Australian in the form of explosive opener David Warner having the honour to grab the ‘Orange Cap’, as his volatile approach made him one of the fine openers in the IPL, and for Sunrisers Hyderabad (SRH). He scored 562 runs from the 14 matches he played, along with an average of 43 and a strike rate of 157, including seven half-centuries, while his highest score was 91. He was the fourth Australian to grab the ‘Orange Cap’, which is a record till date. Nevertheless, his team had a poor season, as they managed to finish at the sixth spot

The ninth season saw a record breaking performance from Virat Kohli, who scored a staggering 973 runs for RCB, from the 16 matches he played. He scored his runs at an average of 81 and a strike rate of 152, which included seven half-centuries and four tons, while his highest score was 113. He was the third Indian to win the ‘Orange Cap’, but he failed to guide his team to their maiden title win.

The 10th season once again saw a commendable performance from a known successful Australian in the form of Warner, who once again proved his dominance in the tournament for the same side. He went on to score 641 runs from the 14 matches, along with an average of 58 and a strike rate of 142, which included five half-centuries and a century, while his highest score was 126, which was also his maiden IPL ton. His honour again sealed Australia’s dominance with the bat in the tournament.