Who will win the IPL 2021?

Mumbai Indians have been the most successful IPL team in the history of the Indian Premier League. Mumbai Indians have won a total of 118 games from their total of 203 games played with a winning percentage of 58.13. This team under the ownership of the Reliance group has so far won a total of 5 IPL titles in the seasons 2013, 2015, 2017, 2019 and 2020. Also, this team has won a total of 2 Champions League trophies in 2011 and 2013. They also have a history of performing well in the early seasons, qualifying in the playoffs of 2010, 2011,2013,2012 and 2014.

Just like previous seasons, Mumbai Indians have the most balanced squad for the 2021 IPL season and are the top contenders for retaining the IPL trophy. Re-signing Australian bowling all-rounder Nathan Coulter-Nile for Rs 5 crore before roping in New Zealand pacer Adam Milne, who is a like-to-like replacement for James Pattinson and will join forces with Jasprit Bumrah

and Trent Boult in MI’s pace attack. Mumbai Indians needed a leg spinner as they had just one option in the form of Rahul Chahar, which is now not the case after they signed Piyush Chawla in the auction earlier in February.

Second to them are the Chennai Super Kings with a total of 106 wins and they have the highest win ratio of 59.22 % amongst all other teams. Led by one of the coolest and successful captains in the history of international cricket MS Dhoni, men in yellow have won a total of 3 IPL titles. This team has also won a total of 2 Champions Trophies and is considered as one of the best teams played in the league so far. CSK is the only team in the IPL who has the record of qualifying into the playoffs of all seasons except for the 2020 season. Out of the 13 seasons finished, CSK became the finalist in 8 seasons.

CSK have roped in all-rounders Moeen Ali and Krishnappa Gowtham and also batsman-wicket keeper Robin Uthhapa to strengthen their side. It would be interesting to see what combinations CSK go with during this year’s IPL. Sam Curran has been a positive for Chennai last season and he would look to continue contributing for the side this year too.

Kolkata Knight Riders are the third most successful team in the history of IPL. This team has won the title 2 times in the years 2012 and 2014. They have qualified into the playoffs in the seasons 2011, 2016, 2017 and in 2018. Also, KKR holds the record for having the greatest number of consecutive wins in IPL. They have won a total of 14 matches in a row, without losing a match. KKR has played a total of 195 matches out of which the team won 98.

They have a winning percentage of 50.26%. KKR have roped in all-rounder Shakib Al Hasan who can be a perfect backup for Andre Russell and Sunil Narine. KKR even retained the Kiwi wicket-keeper batsman Tim Seifert who can prove to be a game changer for the Kolkata side.

Delhi Capitals are another team that could contend for the IPL 2021 trophy. With the solid Indian core in their team, and foreign match winners it would be wrong to not consider them as future champions. Ravichandran Ashwin, Axar Patel and Rishabh Pant have been in tremendous form for the Indian cricket team lately and look a safe bet to finally break their jinx this time around. Being the least successful side in IPL history comes with added pressure though.

Kings XI Punjab have changed their name to Punjab Kings hoping that they also have a change of fortune. However, with an unstable middle order, it might not be as easy. KL Rahul, Chris Gayle, and Mayank Agarwal will be the key for the Kings. Nicholas Pooran in the middle order needs to be at his best to give Punjab a chance to win the IPL for the first time ever.

The introduction of Jhye Richardson is definitely going to give them the much-needed boost in their bowling lineup. Along with him, they also bought Riley Meredith for 8 crores, making him the most expensive uncapped overseas buy of IPL history. The English number 3, Dawid Malan will also play for the Kings in the IPL 2021. They also bought an Indian finisher, Shahrukh Khan, who was sensational in the Syed Mushtaq Ali Trophy 2021.

Punjab Kings have a decent bowling lineup, especially with the inclusion of Jhye Richardson. Along with him, Arshdeep Singh and Mohammed Shami are likely to be the two other pacers. For the spin department, the Punjab Kings have the youngster, Ravi Bishnoi, and a mystery spinner, Murugan Ashwin.

The middle order of Sunrisers Hyderabad has always been a weakness. Although they signed Kedar Jadhav, his current form might not be enough to overshadow that weakness. David Warner has usually been the one-man army, but this year, the burden on him might reduce.

Wriddhiman Saha’s stint in IPL 2020 strengthened his place in the team as an opener. With that, there is an overseas spot vacant for Kane Williamson. Jason Holder could also play as a finisher along with Abdul Samad or Abhishek Sharma.

The bowling is undoubtedly the biggest strength of Sunrisers Hyderabad. There is no weakness for the Orange Army with the ball and are probably the best bowling line-up of the tournament. The death bowling duo of Bhuvneshwar Kumar and T Natarajan is hard to score against and Rashid Khan in the middle overs completely stops the run-flow. If their batting does as good as their bowling, no team can stop them from winning the IPL tournament.

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