The lowest powerplay scores in the IPL looks at the story of the 10 teams who suffered the most calamitous starts to their innings in the history of the competition.
The powerplay, as the name suggests, should be about big shots and high scoring but as we’ll see in the examples below that is not always the case as sides hopes for a fast start are dashed by a flurry of wickets and low scores while the field restrictions are in place.
Rajasthan Royals 14/2 v RCB, 2009
It’s perhaps a little surprising to learn that the lowest powerplay score in IPL history was recorded by at that time the defending champions. The 2009 tournament had to be moved to South Africa so it would be fair to say that conditions were very different from those that saw Rajasthan win the inaugural competition in 2008.
On a pitch offering swing and lateral movement to the seamers both sides made poor starts with RCB’s first innings effort of 29 during the powerplay not far off making it onto the list of lowest powerplay scores in the IPL. Therefore chasing a meagre total of 134 to win, the Royals situation of 14/2 at the end of the powerplay wasn’t terminal and yet they still managed to contrive to be bowled out for 58 which at the time was the lowest ever total in the IPL and the 2nd lowest in all professional T20 cricket.
Player wise, RCB’s Praveen Kumar finished the powerplay with the remarkable figures of 3 overs, 7 runs, 2 wickets – the kind of stats that are usually reserved for red ball cricket!
View the full scorecard here
Sunrisers Hyderabad 14/3 v Rajasthan Royals, 2022
SRH equalled the lowest powerplay score in IPL history with this shocking start to their opening game of the 2022 season.
Having been smashed about by a strong Rajasthan batting line-up, SRH came out to bat chasing 211 to win on a green pitch and with a relatively inexperienced batting line-up. Much relied on captain Kan Williamson getting his young side off to a solid start but he came up against fellow Kiwi Trent Boult who swung and nipped the ball off the pitch just enough to trouble even one of the best technical batsman in the world.
At the other end, Boult got the perfect support from Prasidh Krishna whose high action also extracted lateral movement from the pitch and was good enough to entice an edge from Williamson that was caught by Padikkal at slip following a juggle from keeper Sanju Samson.
In fact so effective were Boult and Prasidh Krishna that they were both able to bowl through the entire powerplay, returning figures of 1 for 8 and 2 for 2 respectively.
Watch full highlights of the equal lowest powerplay here
Chennai Super Kings 15/2 v KKR, 2011
A slow wicket at Eden Gardens and some fine bowling from the home team undoubtedly contributed to CSK’s lowest ever powerplay score in the IPL. However, this was also an innings where the men in yellow seemed to be perpetually stuck in second gear finishing as they did with 114/4 from there 20 overs which suggests perhaps a few more risks might have been taken earlier on.
Perhaps MS Dhoni’s side weren’t enamoured by the captain’s decision to bat first in a game that was ultimately decided by DLS as a result of rain delays. Whatever the reason, CSK crawled to 15/2 in the powerplay allowing 25 dot balls to pass by and failing to strike a single boundary.
View the full scorecard here
Chennai Super Kings 16/1 v DC, 2015
Another low powerplay score in the IPL for CSK, this time against Delhi Capitals in 2015 with a CSK top order that included the likes of Brendon McCullum, Dwayne Smith and Suresh Raina.
Add to that the fact that Delhi Capitals were without their 3 top wicket takers for the year in this match (Tahir , Mishra and Coulter-Nile) and that this was a fixture that pitted one of the best teams (CSK finished top of the table) against one of the worst (DC finished second bottom) and it’s even harder to comprehend how CSK ended up recording the 3rd lowest powerplay score in IPL history.
Early wickets are often the cause of low scores in the powerplay but in this example CSK didn’t lose their first wicket until the very last ball of the powerplay. Along the way, Dehli Capitals managed to bowl 2 maiden overs, the equal most ever recorded in a powerplay in the IPL!
Watch “highlights” of CSK’s very slow start here
Chennai Super Kings 16/1 v RCB, 2019
The first match of the 2019 IPL season was not a brilliant advert for T20 cricket in general. On a slow and turning Chennai pitch, RCB were skittled out for just 70 before the home team opted to take their time in pursuit of the tiny total eventually completing the job in the 18th over. The run rate throughout the match only just made it above 4 which is not unheard of these days in Test Match cricket.
Shane Watson kicked things of with a 10 ball duck, the worst score in the powerplay by a batsman in the IPL when considering balls faced as well. At the other end, Ambati Rayudu crawled to 12 from 20 balls with half his runs coming in one shot, a six off the bowling of Navdeep Saini, the only over of pace that RCB bowled during this low scoring powerplay.
Plenty of wickets but not many runs, watch CSK’s 2nd effort on this list of lowest scores in the powerplay here
Kolkata Knight Riders 17/4 v RCB, 2020
Some poor batting from KKR’s top order combined with some devastating bowler from RCB’s Mohammed Siraj ended this game as a contest before the completition of 6 overs. In fact, so bad was KKR’s start to the powerplay that they found themselves 4 wickets down after just 3 and half overs with experienced duo Eoin Morgan and Dinesh Karthik forced to simply bat out the remaining 15 powerplay deliveries for 3 miserly runs.
At one point in the powerplay, Mohammed Siraj had the incredible figures of 2 overs, 2 maidens, 3 wickets as KKR’s batsman folded in the face of some pinpoint bowling from the Indian seamer.
Watch highlights of KKR’s lowest powerplay score in the IPL here
Mumbai Indians 17/3 v KXIP, 2015
Losing your star batsman and captain second ball of the innings is never a great start to a run chase but that is precisely what happen here as Rohit Sharma’s Mumbai Indians faltered against KXIP. The visitors had already gained significant momentum at the back end of their innings with George Bailey hitting what proved to be a match winning 61 from just 32 balls.
In response, Mumbai lost 3 wickets in the powerplay and at one point were staring down the barrel of a truly humiliating defeat at 59 for 6 before Harbajhan Singh launched a counter attack by hitting 64 from 24 balls.
Watch highlights of Mumbai Indians lowest powerplay score in the IPL here
Royal Challengers Bangalore 17/1 v CSK, 2014
The sharp eyed amongst you may have noticed that all but one game on this list of lowest powerplay scores in the IPL so far has included either one or both of RCB and CSK. Here’s another one for and a pretty good example that sometimes slow and steady wins the race.
On a difficult pitch CSK made 138 batting first and had RCB under the pump when they restricted them to just 17 runs at the end of the powerplay. 9 of those runs came in the first over as Partiv Patel looked to take the aggressive route but when he fell, 2 legends of the IPL in Chris Gayle and Virat Kohli decided to drop anchor scoring just a single off the last 2 overs of the powerplay.
Gayle almost batted through the innings in what must surely have been one of the most sedate knocks he has played in T20 cricket before AB deVilliers and Yuvraj Singh accelerated RCB across the line as they won off the penultimate ball of the match.
Watch highlights of the tight finish after a low score from RCB in the powerplay here
Rajasthan Royals 17/4 v KKR, 2021
Yet another woefully low score in the powerplay by Rajasthan Royals who towards the back end of the 2021 IPL season had given themselves a faint glimmer of hope to qualify for the playoffs. However, those chances were extinguished by 2 truly awful batting displays the first of which saw them restricted to 90 for 9 in 20 overs versus Mumbai Indians and then this effort against KKR where things went from bad to worse.
Rajasthan lost Yashasvi Jaiswal to the 3rd ball of the powerplay but the real blow to their hopes of chasing KKR’s 171 came when they lost captain Sanju Samson in the next over. Samson had been the only Rajasthan batsman to show any form of consistency throughout the season and with the Royals hopes of winning this match and qualifying for the playoffs all but over with his dismissal the wheels really began to fall off.
Lockie Ferguson struck twice in 3 balls to leave the Royals 13 for 4 at the end of the fourth over and it took a Shivam Dube edge past the keeper to rescue this Rajasthan side the indignity of setting yet another record for the lowest powerplay score in the IPL. Interestingly enough, KKR used 5 different bowlers in the powerplay!
View the scorecard of another low powerplay score in the IPL from Rajasthan here
Rajasthan Royals 18/1 v MI, 2011
A low scorer all round in this match between RR and MI. Mumbai managed a total of just 94 from their 20 overs before a Rajasthan side hell bent on not losing early wickets decided to play conservatively from the off.
Rajasthan opted to promote Johan Botha to number 3 and after a slow start that contributed to the low powerplay score he went onto make 45 to go alongside the 3 wickets he claimed in the 1st innings and rightly take the man of the match award as the Royals crawled over the line.
View the scorecard of this low scoring game here
All images used under a CC license
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