NSW SpeedBlitz Blues all-rounder Steve Smith
The Indian Premier League (IPL) is in full swing, with over a third of the tournament already completed. Starting on the 4th April 2012, 29 matches out of 76 have been played, with members of the NSW SpeedBlitz Blues featuring prominently for their respective IPL teams. We take a look at the latest results from the tournament.
Sydney Sixers and Pune Warriors all-rounder Steven Smith has continued his great form in the overseas competition since leading the Sixers to winning the inaugural KFC T20 Big Bash League. In his latest appearance for Pune against the Delhi Daredevils, Smith made an unbeaten 34, which included 4 fours and two sixes, as Pune went on to make 3/192 from their 20 overs.
With a batting lineup that includes Mahela Jayawardene, Virender Sehwag and Kevin Pieterson at the top of the order, Delhi worked hard but consistent wickets fell to leave them 20 runs short as they reached 7/172 from their 20 overs.
Smith, who currently sits 9th on the leading run-scorer list for the tournament, has made 194 runs from 7 matches, at an average of 38 and a strike rate of 152. The top 10 run scorers list is currently led by Ajinkya Rahane with 319 runs from 7 matches, and also includes Chris Gayle, Owais Shah, Gautam Gambhir and fellow Australian Shaun Marsh.
Fellow NSW and Sixers teammate, Brett Lee, is representing the Kolkata Knight Riders in the IPL 2012 this season and has continued to show why he is one of the best T20 bowlers going around. Bowling first, Lee took 1/15 from his four overs, and played a major role in restricting the Deccan Chargers to just 126 from their 20 overs.
For the tournament, Lee has taken 5 wickets in five matches at an average of 21.2, with an economy rate of only 5.88, as Kolkata have gone on to win 4 of their opening 7 games.
Sydney Thunder quick Doug Bollinger had his KFC T20 Big Bash League stint cut short through injury, but since returning to the IPL, he has been in excellent form. Playing for defending champions, Chennai Super Kings, Bollinger took 1/31 in their latest game, as they went on to beat Rajasthan Royals by 7 wickets.
Chennai are currently equal first in the IPL standings, winning 4 of their opening 7 games. Bollinger has played a crucial role in the tournament thus far, taking 8 wickets in six matches at an average of 19.62 with the best bowling figures of 3/24.
Whilst Smith, Lee and Bollinger continue to star in the IPL, fellow Sydney Thunder and Australian batsman David Warner is yet to make an appearance. Warner, currently on Australian International Test duties, will represent the Delhi Daredevils once his international commitments are fulfilled, and will provide an exciting opening partner for Delhi, when he partners with Virender Sehwag.