2022 is another Men's T20 World Cup year, this time to be held in Australia. In the context of the mega event in the shortest format of the game, the performances in IPL 2022 become all more crucial in seeing how India's core players are faring in the shortest format of the game.
With T20I matches coming against South Africa, England, West Indies, Australia apart from an Asia Cup in the mix, performances in IPL 2022 will give the Indian selectors a look at how the national side players are performing in the extravagant league.
India's opening pair in 2021 Men's T20 World Cup was Rohit Sharma and KL Rahul. But in IPL 2022, Rahul has been the best Indian batter in the tournament, making 451 runs in ten matches at an average of 56.38 and strike-rate of 145.01, including twin centuries against Mumbai Indians.
Sharma, on the other hand, has endured a lean run with the bat, amassing just 155 runs in nine innings at an average of 17.22 and strike-rate of 123.01. In contrast, his ODI opening partner, Shikhar Dhawan, is enjoying a fine run with Punjab Kings, scoring 369 runs in ten matches at an average 46.13 and strike-rate of 124.66.
Ishan Kishan, the swashbuckling keeper-batter, who opened in the loss to New Zealand, hasn't found his groove in IPL 2022 after starting off with two half-centuries. In nine matches, Kishan has made only 225 runs in nine matches, at an average of 28.13 and strike-rate of 111.38.
Virat Kohli's extended tough run for almost two years has continued in IPL 2022. Despite giving up the captaincy of Royal Challengers Bangalore, Kohli's batting returns have been strictly lean, with 216 runs in eleven matches at an average of 21.60 and a lowly strike rate of 111.91. He finally reached his first fifty of the tournament in an afternoon match against Gujarat Titans but that has done little to indicate that Kohli is back to his glorious touch.
With Shreyas Iyer and Suryakumar Yadav amongst the runs for Kolkata Knight Riders and Mumbai Indians respectively, they have put themselves in contention to be in the Indian middle-order.
In terms of wicketkeeper-batter, Rishabh Pant has got 234 runs at a strike rate of 149.04 while captaining Delhi Capitals. But Rajasthan Royals captain Sanju Samson has scored more than Pant, amassing 298 runs at a strike rate of 153.6 in ten matches.
There is a lot of time left before IPL 2022 ends and India's international journey till the World Cup begins. But if the numbers are to go by, India's batters haven't touched their peak yet in the ongoing tournament.