None of the five batsmen from the maiden campaign managed to crack their way into the Top 5 this season.ttmum
With the Wankhede infamous for being a batsman’s paradise and the league brimming with some outstanding batting talent, it comes as no surprise that a bunch of the city’s elite talents piled up runs aplenty in Season 2 of T20 Mumbai. In addition to the league’s maiden ton, a total of 38 half-centuries were seen in Season 2 of which, the league’s top 5 run-scorers accounted for 10 50s as well as that century.
Let’s take a look at who made it to the list of the Top 5 Batsmen of Season 2 -
North Mumbai Panthers’ skipper Prithvi Shaw started off his season with a couple of knocks where he got off to good starts but failed to capitalize and smash a big score. However, that changed as the season progressed and in the knockout phase of the campaign, the youngster came into his own and smashed two crucial half-centuries, leading his team by example and helping them capture the T20 Mumbai crown.
Shaw finished the season with, a league-leading, 249 runs in six matches and took home the MVP honours for his efforts.
Picked up by the Eagle Thane Strikers in the Player Draft ahead of the season, wicketkeeper-batsman Aditya Tare kicked off his season in grand style with a magnificent 71 against the North Mumbai Panthers and followed it up with another 50 against fellow newcomers Aakash Tigers and continued in the same vein over the next two matches as well.
In the Strikers’ final league stage fixture of the season against the NaMo Bandra Blasters, Tare and his side were tasked with chasing down 148 in 12 overs to stand a chance to qualify for the semis. While Prabhu, deservedly, took all the plaudits for his inning of 64 off 21 balls, Tare too, played his part and smashed 50 off 27 to get his team over the line. Tare finished his season with 244 runs and was the only player who scored over 200 runs during the league stages and for his outstanding batting throughout the campaign, Tare was named the Best Batsman of Season 2.
SoBo SuperSonics skipper Jay Bista struggled for form early in the season, amassing just 78 runs in his first four outings, but the opener finally found his footing in a crucial match against the Shivaji Park Lions, scoring 33 off 31 on a tough batting surface to ensure that team got to a match-winning score. On the big stage in the semi-final, Bista made history as he became the first man to score a century in T20 Mumbai and forged, a record, 196-run partnership with Hersh Tank, as the pair guided their team to the final of Season 2.
Bista finished the season with 242 runs in seven matches, the third-highest tally in the league.
ARCS Andheri opener Akhil Herwadkar enjoyed a stellar campaign in Season 2 and finished as the league’s fourth highest run-getter with 231 runs in six matches. The Southpaw was one only three batsmen to score three fifties in Season 2, alongside Tare and Shaw, and two of those came in crucial victories for the ARCS during the league stages. His first came in his team’s epic chase against the NaMo Bandra Blasters, where his gritty knock at the top of the order enabled the rest of the lineup to go after the oppositions’ bowling attack, while the other came in the very next match against the Lions, where Herwadkar remained not out as the ARCS chased down 159 with just a ball to spare.
His third and final half-century of the season came against the North Mumbai Panthers in the semi-final where he scored 69 off 47 to help his team get to 166 but it wasn’t enough as the ARCS were beaten in a last-ball thriller ending their tournament. Nevertheless, it was a fabulous season for Herwadkar whose performances helped him earn a spot in the Team of the Season.
All-rounder Parag Khanapurkar made a big impact with the ball in Season 2, but he dished out major damage with the bat and finished the campaign with 229 runs in seven matches. He kicked off his campaign in grand style, smashing 96 off just 49 deliveries, which was, at the time, the second-highest score in T20 Mumbai. Khanapurkar played another splendid knock against the Aakash Tigers, scoring 45 off 40 balls on a difficult batting track which helped his team get to a match-winning total of 143.
In the final against North Mumbai Panthers, Khanapurkar batted valiantly for his 43 after his team were reduced to 41/3 in just the eighth over and got the team into a winnable position, but unfortunately, he couldn’t finish the contest for his side as the SuperSonics finished runners-up.