The Indian Premier League (IPL) is one of the richest and most fascinating competitions in the world. It has been running since 2008 and since then has continued to grow into a showcase of the world’s top twenty20 cricketers.
The tournament is pretty much like no other in that players are touted each year in an auction style. The 8 franchises that take part are each able to bring a budget often worth hundreds of millions of dollars to the table in order to bid for the better players. Once a player has been assigned a franchise they are then contracted to play for only that franchise until they are either retained at the end of the season or released back into the pool of players.
The price of players has increased quite dramatically over the year with several million being exchanged per player. The money that is generated from television rights around the world has enabled these franchises to offer these astronomical sums of money but has also placed an IPL brand estimate thought to be worth over $3billion.
History of the IPL
The competition has now been running successfully since 2008 and has largely been dominated by the Chennai Superkings. The franchise has managed to notch up no fewer than two tournament wins with 3 more runner-up spots. They are the only team to have won the competition more than once and have been captained by the Indian skipper MS Dhoni over the years.
The competition was actually held outside of India only once, in South Africa. This was in 2009 when the IPL coincided with the electoral votes taking place in the country and it was advised that the tournament be moved or scrapped. The choice to move it to South Africa proved to bus successful, but since then it’s always been back on Indian soil. Interestingly, 2014 will see the same issues with electoral votes and some of the competition has already been proposed to move to South Africa once again.
Throughout the IPL’s relatively short timescale, it’s gone on to create some very interesting facts, stats and records. One of the most staggering has to be that of the individual scores that have been made. Several hundreds have been achieved since 2008 but a top score of 175 not out by West Indian, Chris Gayle will take some beating. He faced just 66 balls to reach his feet at an astonishing strike rate of 266.15.
Gayle also happens to hold the fastest century in the competition reaching three figures from just 30 balls. This is 7 balls faster than the next fastest by Indian slugger, Yousuf Pathan. The records don’t stop there for Gayle either as he holds records for the most runs in a series (733), Most sixes (180) and most runs from boundaries in an innings (154).
Bowlers tend to get the brunt of it when it comes to twenty20 cricket but there are some that have consistently performed over the years. Lasith Malinga of Sri Lanka and the Mumbai Indians has taken 103 wickets since his first appearance in the competition in 2009. Malinga is also ranked second in most wickets in one campaign with 28, just four behind leader Dwayne Bravo of the Chennai Superkings. Best bowling figures in a match of 6 for 14 by Pakistani Sohail Tanvir in 2008 still remain today although few will forget Anil Kumble’s demolition of the Rajasthan Royals in 2009 with figures of 5 for 5 from 3.1 overs.
Some of the highest scores in the competition have been will in excess of the 200 mark and it comes as little surprise to hear that Chris Gayle’s Royal Challengers Bangalore are the leaders with a staggering 263 runs from their 20 overs.
Where to bet and markets to look out for
The massive plus side to the IPL is that it’s available on pretty much all bookmakers. It’s just one of those competitions that now, no bookmaker will be without. This puts the punter in one of those dream scenarios where not only can you choose your favourite bookmaker but you can also shop around for the best value bets in the industry.
The amount of information available on the IPL means that you can target markets of your choice. It’s quite a detailed stats game is cricket, meaning that you can easily see where each franchise is both strong and weak.
As a rule we like to target the sixes market and also the over/under line on the amount of runs scored. Often each ground will yield more runs than others so take a bit of time to dig out the highest scoring grounds and conversely look at the lower scoring grounds. Then check the team line ups; are they a batting or bowling team? How many runs have they been scoring in previous matches? It’s these sorts of questions that you need to ask in order to find your value bets.