The Indian Premier League (IPL) has emerged as one of the most thrilling and prestigious cricket tournaments worldwide since its inception in 2008. This fast-paced, high-octane extravaganza has witnessed some of the finest cricketers showcasing their skills and entertaining fans from all corners of the globe. With a league format that pits ten franchise teams against each other, the IPL has become a breeding ground for outstanding talent and fierce competition. As the league flourished over the years, a plethora of exceptional players have graced the hallowed grounds, leaving an indelible mark on the tournament’s history. Among the countless stars who have lit up the IPL, there emerges a formidable “Playing XI” – a dream team comprising the very best from the tournament’s rich tapestry.
In this article, we delve into the captivating realm of the IPL and compile a lineup of the finest players, representing various facets of the game, to form the ultimate playing XI of the IPL 2023. Join us as we celebrate the brilliance and analyze the impact of these exceptional cricketers who have left an everlasting legacy on the grand stage of the IPL.
Here’s presenting the best-playing XI from the 16th edition of the Indian Premier League
Openers: Faf du Plessis and Shubman Gill
The Indian Premier League 2023 was dominated by openers. From Yashasvi Jaiswal to David Warner to Faf du Plessis to Shubman Gill, everyone performed exceptionally. The top-scoring batter at the end of the league campaign, Faf du Plessis truly had his finest IPL season yet. He scored 730 runs in just 14 innings at an astonishing average of 56.15. Faf’s consistency helped Royal Challengers Bangalore to win many matches on his own.
Partnering with the RCB skipper will be the Orange Cap holder Shubman Gill. Gill is in tremendous form. It is best ever IPL season yet. Gill has amassed 851 runs in 16 innings at an average of 60.79 and a strike rate of 156.43. Gill has terrorised the bowlers with his elegant strokeplay. He has scored 3 massive hundreds this season. His ton against Mumbai Indians in the Qualifier 2 is one of the most excellent hundreds ever witnessed by us in the entirety of the Indian Premier League.
Middle Order: Virat Kohli, Suryakumar Yadav, Heinrich Klaasen (wk), Rinku Singh
The middle order of the best-playing XI of IPL 2023 is filled with superstars and emerging stars. First on the list is IPL veteran Virat Kohli. After showing signs of form, Virat Kohli exploded in the 16th edition of IPL. Kohli was third on the Orange Cap list, scoring 639 runs in 14 innings. “King Kohli” scored 2 big hundreds in this edition of IPL that helped take his team to victory in crucial matches.
Next is World No. 1 T20I batter Suryakumar Yadav. Surya didn’t quite set the stage on fire. In the first five matches, Suryakumar Yadav scored just 66 runs. However, the Mumbai Indians batter turned the tournament on its head. In the next seven matches, Surya scored 539 runs at a jaw-breaking strike rate of 181.14. Surya’s unconventional yet effective shots were a highlight of IPL 2023. His six over third man off Mohammad Shami’s ball is a shot etched in the memory of the fans. In IPL 2023, Suryakumar Yadav scored 605 runs in 16 innings at an average of 43.21. The right-hander scored one hundred against Gujarat Titans in the league stage.
When it comes to the choice of a wicketkeeper, no one beats the impact Heinrich Klaasen had, no matter where SRH finished this season. The South African was the biggest performer for his franchise, with no other player coming even close. Klassen scored 448 runs in 12 innings at an excellent strike rate of 177.07. The right-hander also smashed a wonderful century against Royal Challengers Bangalore to take his team to a respectable score.
Kolkata Knight Rider’s only glimmer of hope in an otherwise disappointing season; Rinku Singh also makes the list. After showing signs of brilliance last season, Rinku Singh got a consistent run of games in IPL 2023. The left-handed basher smacked 474 runs in 14 innings at an average of 59.52 and a strike rate of 139.52. Playing the role of a finisher, Rinku played his role to perfection. The match where he smashed 30 runs off Yash Dayal’s last over is the stuff of legends.
All-rounders: Hardik Pandya (C), Rashid Khan
Although Hardik Pandya the all-rounder hasn’t been able to repeat his remarkable IPL 2022 form, Hardik Pandya’s leadership skills were on point. The current Team India T20I skipper won 10 matches out of 14 games to top the Indian Premier League 2023 table. The all-rounder has kept things simple and not experimented during crunch situations. The Gujarat Titans skipper has scored 325 runs in 15 innings. In bowling, he has been off-colour. The all-rounder could only take 3 wickets whilst going for 8.91 runs per over.
Another Gujarat Titans player, Rashid Khan makes the list. Afghanistan’s current T20I skipper Rashid Khan is second on the Purple Cap list. The mystery spinner has taken 27 wickets in 16 innings. Rashid has also contributed with the bat whenever presented with an opportunity. During their league stage match against Mumbai Indians, the swashbuckling batter threatened to take take the match away from Mumbai with a whirlwind of an innings.
Bowlers: Mohammad Shami, Yuzvendra Chahal, Matheesha Pathirana
Sitting at the top of the Purple Cap list, Mohammad Shami has been in tremendous form for the Gujarat Titans this season. The right-arm pacer has taken wickets at every stage of the game. Be it powerplay or death overs, Mohammad Shami has delivered his best for the team. The pacer has taken 28 wickets in 16 games at an average of 17.60 and an economy rate of 7.90.
IPL’s highest wicket-taker, Yuzvendra Chahal was also in excellent form this season. Playing for Rajasthan Royals, the leg-spinner took 21 scalps in just 14 games to become the highest wicket-taker for his side in IPL 2023. With a best of 4 for 17 runs, Chahal was very economical throughout the season.
Matheesha Pathirana has been the “find of the season”. The Sri Lankan’s deadly and accurate yorkers have been unplayable in the death overs. Taking 17 wickets in just 11 innings, Pathirana average 19.23 runs per wicket and has an economy of 7.72 runs per over.
Special Mention: Yashasvi Jaiswal, Piyush Chawla, David Warner, Mohit Sharma
Mumbai-born Yashasvi Jaiswal brought his domestic form into IPL 2023. The left-hander smacked 625 runs in just 14 innings at a fantastic strike rate of 163.61. Jaiswal was breathing fire in this edition of the IPL. During a match against the Kolkata Knight Riders at Eden Gardens, he set a new record by scoring the fastest 50 in IPL history, achieving this feat in just 13 balls.
Piyush Chawla, the old willy spinner from Uttar Pradesh, reinvented himself in this season of IPL. Playing for Mumbai Indians, the leg-spinner took 22 wickets in 15 games. Be it powerplay or middle overs, Chawla took wickets consistently. He never allowed the opposition to get settled, outfoxing the batters with his googlies. Being the highest wicket-taker for his side, Chawla was the fourth-highest wicket-taker this season.
Delhi Capitals had a disappointing season. The team could only bag 10 points in the entire tournament and was the first team to get eliminated from the playoffs stage. However, their skipper David Warner performed exceptionally. In 14 innings, the southpaw amassed 516 runs at an average of 36.86 and a strike rate of 131.63.
Mohit Sharma last played an IPL game in IPL 2019 before this season. He was playing for Chennai Super Kings and couldn’t impress the management and MS Dhoni. He was then overlooked by all the franchises. But Gujarat Titans called him as a net bowler in IPL 2022 and he immediately left an indelible impression on Head Coach Ashish Nehra and skipper Hardik Pandya. Mohit Sharma repaid their faith in IPL 2023. The right-arm pacer took 27 wickets in 14 games at an average of 13.37. Sharma was second on the list of Purple Cap, behind his Gujarat Titans teammate Mohammad Shami.