Indian Premier League has been like a boon for the cricketers, especially for the local Ranji players. It has given them the international exposure that a player would need to enter in the national team for international games. IPL is one epic T20 format of cricket, serving as the life-changing event for many players.
It has introduced a different level to the game, becoming a fever for the players, the franchises, and the fans. It allows the players to play freely, to enjoy and discover themselves, and get their position in the game. In fact, as the event has gone on to climb up the ladder of success, veteran cricketers have announced their retirement from the international games.
This year the two world famous cricketers, Imran Tahir and Chris Gayle have announced their retirement from ODIs after the World Cup 2019. And so have many retired from IPL as well. Following is the list of the best cricketers those retired from IPL.
All-Time Best Retired Cricketers in IPL History:
IPL Career Stats: Matches – 154, Runs – 4,217, Fifties – 36
Gautam Gambhir started off his IPL career with his home franchise, Delhi Daredevils. And after three years of him being with them, Gambhir joined Kolkata Knight Riders. His association with KKR brought the best out of him. But the favour was not just for him, the team got the result from his guidance as well.
KKR won the IPL championships twice under his captaincy. While the team was climbing its own success, Gambhir’s performance rose throughout the seven championships as well. His best IPL season was in the year 2016, during which he scored 501 runs for his team.
The batsman who was popularly called as ‘Mr. Dependable’ switched back to his home team Delhi in 2018 in hopes of getting them back on track. However, his poor form led him to give away the captaincy baton. His announcement of retirement came through a video on his social media account which broke the hearts of millions of his fans.
Despite all the drama, Gambhir still remains one of the most favourite cricketers and a glorious opener of the IPL.
IPL Career Stats: Matches – 104, Runs – 2728, Strike Rate – 155.44
Virender Sehwag kick-started his IPL career with Delhi Daredevils and remained with them for six seasons of the IPL. After that, he was released by the franchise and picked up by Kings XI Punjab.
His 58 balls 122 in the eliminators drove Punjab straight to their first finals in 2014 IPL. Later in the following year, his disappointing performance led him to manage the team of Kings XI Punjab from the next season. He never won any IPL tournament but Sehwag always proved to be a quality performer for his team. He was one of those rare batsmen who even after playing over 100 matches, had a strike rate of 150+ in the IPL.
With 334 fours and 106 sixes, Sehwag scored two centuries and 16 half-centuries during his entire IPL career. And like Gautam Gambhir, he bid adieu to the game with just 99 runs in his final eight matches.
IPL Career Stats: Matches – 89, Runs – 2,174, Fours – 289
The famous ‘Test Specialist’ made his IPL debut for Royal Challengers Bangalore in 2008. But then the local boy of Bangalore was released in 2010, and he was bought by Rajasthan Royals in 2011. From there he took the franchise to new heights in IPL.
Dravid played as an opener of the team and took his team to enormous scores with a strike rate of 115.52. Even after his retirement from cricket he continues to serve the game as a true devotee and is coaching India A and U-19 teams.
Dravid’s stability in the game had him see things through and handle the innings easily. After Gambhir and Sehwag, he is the most cherished cricketer in the retired players’ XI list.
Kumar Sangakkara (WK):
IPL Career Stats: Matches – 71, Highest score – 94, Catches – 45, Stumpings – 9
The wicketkeeper-batsman made his IPL debut in 2008 as a part of the Kings XI Punjab franchise. Later, he switched to Deccan Chargers before joining Sunrisers Hyderabad. The Sri Lankan legend’s IPL career ended with a mere aggregate of 120 runs in nine matches in 2013.
He scored his runs at a strike rate shimmering strike rate of 161.61 at an average of more than 35. He continued to perform well for his next three seasons, scoring over 300 runs in every season. He retired as the best wicketkeeper in IPL, irrespective of his lowering batting performance.
IPL Career Stats: Matches – 80, Highest Scores – 110*, Fours – 200
The Overseas player too played for three franchises in his IPL career, Kings XI Punjab, Kochi Tuskers Kerala and Delhi Daredevils respectively.
The Sri Lankan linchpin was a great batsman in his prime. Throughout his IPL career, Jayawardene aggregated 1,802 runs at an average of 28.60 that comprises of 200 fours and 39 sixes.
The phenomenal cricketer had his best IPL season in 2010 where he scored 439 runs throughout the season at a strike rate of 147.31. At present he is the coach of Mumbai Indians since IPL 2017.