Cricket World Player Of The Week - Brendon McCullum
The knock was laced with seven fours and nine sixes as he took a heavy toll of a good Sunrisers Hyderabad bowling line-up boasting of one of the best World Cup bowlers, Trent Boult.
McCullum, who raced away to a half-century was stuck in the 80s while MS Dhoni tonked the bowling all around for a 29-ball 53. However, McCullum made sure he made the most of the last over, getting to his century and taking Chennai Super Kings to 209.
The week had quite a few contenders who turned in good performances.
Rohit Sharma’s 98 not out against Kolkata Knight Riders was another excellent performance even if it came in a losing cause. Rohit guided Mumbai Indians to a good total of 168, although KKR’s strong batting line-up managed to overhaul it.
The quality of the innings was accentuated by his steady start to anchor the innings when Mumbai Indians lost two quick wickets, with a late onslaught. His knock had 12 fours and four sixes.
A similar innings was played by Chris Gayle who too missed out on a century. However, RCB’s typhoon opening batsman single-handedly won them the game with a 56-ball 96 chasing 177 where RCB’s next highest individual total was just 28.
Gautam Gambhir, who ended up on the losing side in that game, was another contender for Player Of The Week, scoring two half-centuries in two games. While his 58 against RCB saw him end up on the losing side, his 57 chasing 168 against Mumbai Indians ensured a win for his team.
Two more fabulous performances of the week came from Rajasthan Royals players, each of them winning a game for their team.
Against Kings XI Punjab, James Faulkner performed with the bat and the ball. He scored a 33-ball 46 to set up a good score of 162 for Rajasthan. With the ball, Faulkner returned figures of three for 26 that never let KXIP take off in the middle overs.
The other star was the young Indian Under-19 player Deepak Hooda who scored a 25-ball 54 under pressure against Delhi Daredevils to help chase down 184 in a game that went down to the wire. Hooda also bowled a spectacular four-over spell, miserly giving away just 20 runs.
In the same game, Imran Tahir, who ended up on the losing side came up with one of the best bowling spells this season. His four for 28 ensured Delhi Daredevils took the game right to the last ball and it was a pity he didn’t end up on the winning side.
The same was true for another Delhi player - Albie Morkel, whose unbeaten 73 almost took his team home chasing 150 against Chennai Super Kings in the opening game. Morkel who came at 15 for one, had to hit a six off the last ball and could manage only a four. His 73 came off 55 balls.
The last of the top performances this week came from Harbhajan Singh for Mumbai Indians who were chasing 177 against Kings XI Punjab. Although it ended on a lost cause, Harbhajan almost brought hopes of a miracle alive.
His 64 off just 24 balls with five fours and six sixes ensured Mumbai Indians lost the game by just 18 runs, where at one time they looked like losing by more than 100 and not to forget his effort with the ball as he picked up two wickets conceding just 20 runs.
All in all, it turned out to be a brilliant week of cricket with more than half a dozen players coming up with sterling performances.
© Cricket World 2015