Thanks to the outstanding performances of all of the teams and their respective players, IPL 2022 has been a breath of fresh air. The addition of two new teams lengthened the season, but it was well worth the wait. The revelations of some unknown faces and youngsters were truly the season’s highlight. Many of these rookies have risen through the ranks admirably to be named to India’s squad for the upcoming international matches. This season was also full of surprises, with the two big guns of the IPL, Chennai Super Kings and Mumbai Indians, being pushed to the bottom of the points table by other teams. While the two new teams, Gujarat Titans and Lucknow Super Giants, both made the playoffs in their inaugural seasons.
In the T20 format, finishing the game is an ‘art.’ IPL 2022 had some incredible finishers. The ability to stay in the game until the end with a healthy strike rate and win it with some spectacular hitting has been a weapon that every team aspires to have. MS Dhoni, the consummate finisher of games, has provided us with numerous displays of his brilliance. This season, he also demonstrated that he still has what it takes to close the deal when it comes down to the wire. Many new faces did an excellent job of finishing the game on numerous occasions this season.
Here are the 3 BEST Finishers of this season.
Number 1. Liam Livingstone
Punjab Kings had an average IPL 2022 season, but one player who stood out was Englishman Liam Livingstone. He has been one of the season’s most valuable players. His ability to hit the ball miles into the stands at will makes him a lethal middle-order batter. He finished games for Punjab Kings this season and was their standout performer.
In the mega auction ahead of the IPL 2022, Punjab Kings secured the services of Livingstone for a hefty sum of INR 11.5 crore. His numbers reflect his high price, as he contributed well in both departments of the game. He scored 437 runs at an impressive strike rate of 182.08 and also made four half-centuries.
When it comes to brute force, Liam Livingstone exemplifies it, as he demonstrated when he hit the longest six of IPL 2022, which was 117m, with Mohammed Shami on the receiving end. He hit 34 sixes this season, trailing only the purple cap holder Jos Buttler. His handy spin bowling was the icing on the cake. He took six wickets and had the best figures of the season with 3/27.
Number 2. Shimron Hetmyer
Rajasthan Royals have been mighty impressive this season, whether it’s their batting or bowling, everything has worked in their favour, allowing them to reach the IPL 2022 finals. Shimron Hetmyer, an aggressive West Indian left-handed batter, has been a key figure in their playing XI. He has significantly improved his game. He used to be someone who could contribute quick runs against spin and pace in the middle order, but this time he made sure he crossed the finish line for his team.
In this season’s IPL, he has scored 303 runs with an excellent average of 50.50 and a healthy strike rate of 157.81. Shimron Hetmyer was signed by Rajasthan Royals for a fee of INR 8.5 crore, and he has more than justified that fee with his exceptional finishing abilities. Despite only having one half-century knock of 59*, his finishing cameos of 31 of 16 balls, 27 of 13 balls, and 29 of 17 balls have had a significant impact for the Rajasthan Royals.
The ‘Jos Buttler Show’ has been front and centre, but when it came down to the wire, it was Shimron Hetmyer who ensured that RR crossed the finish line in the majority of those matches. Shimron Hetmyer was not regarded as a reliable finisher a few years ago, but he has since established himself as a middle-order batsman and dependable finisher for both the Rajasthan Royals and his national team, the West Indies. He has unquestionably established himself as one of the best finishers in T20 cricket.
Number 3. Dinesh Karthik
Dinesh Karthik’s epic comeback has been the talk of town. Some refer to him as “the comeback king” because he has been in the picture since India’s first T20 match in 2006 and has made another appearance in the Indian T20 squad for the upcoming series against South Africa. Dinesh Karthik deserves a lot of credit for RCB’s performance this season. Dinesh Karthik rose to the occasion on multiple occasions as Virat Kohli and Glenn Maxwell failed to deliver as expected.
He scored 330 runs in 16 innings in this IPL, with a remarkable average of 55.00 and a stunning strike rate of 183.33. During the season, he also did not miss a single game. Whenever RCB was in trouble, he gave his all. His performance for KKR in the previous two seasons was not up to his potential, but this time he had a point to prove, and he did so with flying colours.
His highest score this season was 66*, his only fifty-plus score, but it was the impactful and quickfire 30s and 40s that propelled him to the top of the finishers list. His unbeaten 37-run knock in 23 balls against Lucknow Super Giants in the eliminator was critical in setting up a massive target alongside Rajat Patidar. Another knock of 30 runs in 8 balls in one of the league matches against Sunrisers Hyderabad propelled their score to 192/3, giving RCB a much-needed advantage in that game. Overall, Dinesh Karthik has made an impact with his bat and emerged as a match-winning finisher.