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Top Performer: Devdutt Padikkal's ton

By NORMA ASTRID GODINHO
April 23, 2021 06:42 IST
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Devdutt Padikkal struck 11 fours and 6 sixes in his innings of 101 off 52 balls

IMAGE: Devdutt Padikkal struck 11 fours and 6 sixes in his innings of 101 off 52 balls. Photograph: BCCI
 

Scoring centuries in T20s is such a rarity that when a player gets one in the IPL, it truly becomes a feat to savour.

And RCB Opener Devdutt Padikkal made it one such night as he went to score his maiden IPL ton to give RCB fans a reason to cheer.

Needing 178 for victory, Virat Kohli and Padikkal came out to bat and batted like they never wanted to leave.

Kohli started his innings with a six over long-on, but thereafter he was a happy spectator, watching his young team-mate take down the opposition bowling one over after another.

Padikkal got off the mark with a single, but threafter dealt in fours and sixes as he belted the bowlers around the park.

Spinners and medium pacers were treated alike as he pulled, cut, flicked. His best shot came in the 5th over, when he hit a lofted off drive off Mustafizur Rahman.

There was no stopping Padikkal as he consistently found the boundary, over after over, through all areas of the ground.

Padikkal's innings was laced with 6 sixes and 11 fours and he got to his maiden IPL century with a crisp drive to the covers for a boundary in the same over that saw RCB canter to a 10-wicket win.

Padikkal had shown last season that he is a big game player and though questions were raised about his strike rate he put all doubts to rest batting at a strike rate of over 194.

With RCB top of the table and more than a month of the IPL to go, much is expected from this young lad.

Padikkal is the first player born in the new century -- he will turn 21 on July 7; he shares a birthday with the great M S Dhoni 19 years apart, of course -- to score an IPL century.

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NORMA ASTRID GODINHO
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Indian Premier League - 2021

Indian Premier League - 2021