On Saturday at the Eden Gardens against Sunrisers Hyderabad, Kolkata’s Yusuf Pathan created IPL history by notching up the fastest half-century in the Indian Premier League (IPL) till date. Here’s a recap of the top five fastest fifties in the IPL.
Yusuf Pathan: The big-hitting batsman from Kolkata Knight Riders smashed a half-century from only 15 balls against Sunrisers Hyderabad on Saturday at the Eden Gardens. Kolkata were chasing 161 to win the game, but they needed to achieve the target in under 15 overs to finish the league table in second spot, behind Kings XI Punjab. Pathan ended up smashing 72 in 22 balls with the aid of five fours and as many as seven sixes. He maintained a strike rate of 327 during the innings, as Kolkata chased down the target in 14.2 overs and finished the league table in second place.
Adam Gilchrist: The smashing Aussie held the earlier record for the fastest half-century. He blasted a 50 off 17 balls for Deccan Chargers Hyderabad against Delhi Daredevils at Centurion on May 22, 2009. This was the first semi-final of the 2009 edition. Hyderabad were chasing a challenging score of 154 to progress to the final, and skipper Gilchrist led the way for them. He plundered 85 from only 35 balls, with 10 fours and 5 sixes, finishing with a strike rate of 243. Gilchrist achieved target in 17.4 overs, with six wickets in hand, for a comprehensive triumph.
Chris Gayle: The West Indian T20 legend also has a fifty from 17 balls to his credit. He did this in a match for Royal Challengers Bangalore against Pune Warriors on April 23, 2013. Bangalore batted first in this league match and Gayle, opening the innings, made an astounding 175 not out from 66 balls. The marauding southpaw’s knock featured 13 fours and an unbelievable 17 sixes. His strike rate in the innings was 265. Thanks to Gayle, RCB ended up with 263 for 5 and won the game by a massive margin of 130 runs.
Robin Uthappa: TheOrange Cap holder of the ongoing edition, Uthappa registered a half-century from 19 balls for Royal Challengers Bangalore against Kings XI Punjab on March 16, 2010. Bangalore were chasing a massive 204 to win this home clash. Uthappa, coming in at number three, smashed an unbeaten 51 from 21 balls, with four fours and four sixes at a brilliant strike rate of 243. Bangalore achieved the target in 18.5 overs with eight wickets in hand.
Owais Shah: A surprise here. The out-of-favour England batsman smashed a fifty from 19 balls for Rajasthan Royals against Bangalore on April 15, 2012. Rajasthan took first strike in the game and Shah, batting at number three, blasted 60 from only 26 balls. The innings featured five fours and as many sixes, ending with a strike rate of 231. Rajasthan finished on 195 for 2, and went on to win the clash by 59 runs.
--By A Cricket Analyst