AB de Villiers picked as the 12th man in ESPN Cricinfo's all-time IPL XI

AB de Villiers picked as the 12th man in ESPN Cricinfo’s all-time IPL XI

MS Dhoni was unanimously chosen the captain and wicket-keeper of the team.

AB de Villiers of Royal Challengers Bangalore, 2017
AB de Villiers of Royal Challengers Bangalore, 2017. (Photo: IANS)

After intense voting for the last 6 weeks, ESPN Cricinfo announced their all-time IPL XI after selecting from 31 nominees. The 17 member panel who made the decision comprised of 5 former Test cricketers. It wasn’t an easy decision and the biggest name to miss out was none other AB de Villiers who is unanimously regarded as the best batsman in the world.

It was a tough call to make but the 4 players foreign policy didn’t allow de Villiers to feature with the two Caribbeans Chris Gayle and Dwayne Bravo getting the nod. If it was not for the selection criteria, de Villiers would have certainly been in the XI. There was a tough competition between Gayle and Warner at the top of the order and the end the big man from Jamaica tipped Warner by a solitary point.

The middle order is loaded with Indian superstars with the likes of Virat Kohli, Suresh Raina and Rohit Sharm. They have been stalwarts for their respective IPL franchises. While Kohli has played for just a single team for all these 10  years, Rohit Sharma after moving from the Deccan Chargers have been a part of the Mumbai Indians outfit for a long time.

MS Dhoni was unanimously chosen as the captain and the wicketkeeper of the team. His record speaks for himself and two IPL titles and two Champions League title signifies the importance of the man. He has a great IPL record and there wasn’t a doubt behind the choice. Dwayne Bravo who is the only bowler to bag the Purple cap twice takes the all-rounder’s slot for his impressive showing in all the seasons.

Sunil Narine who is the most economical bowler in the competition occupies the 8th spot along with Ravichandran Ashwin coming in the 9th position. Ashwin was a potent weapon for Dhoni during their CSK days and has bagged 100 wickets in the competition.

Bhuvneshwar Kumar who might become the first bowler to bag back to back purple cap awards occupies the 10t spot with the most successful bowler Lasith Malinga coming in the 11t position. The Slinga has a total of 153 wickets to his name at a staggering average of 18. AB de Villiers was unanimously chosen as the 12th man.

ESPNcricinfo’s all-time IPL XI

1. Chris Gayle, 2 Virender Sehwag, 3 Virat Kohli, 4 Suresh Raina, 5 Rohit Sharma, 6 MS Dhoni (capt, wk), 7 Dwayne Bravo, 8 Sunil Narine, 9 R Ashwin, 10 Bhuvneshwar Kumar, 11 Lasith Malinga

12th man: AB de Villiers