It's not hard to reason this one but you migh...
It is arguably the most lucrative--if not downright popular--format of cricket. And despite it's smaller potions, it involves action, drama and rivalries that call for everyone's attention no matter how much they claim to despise it. This is Twenty20 cricket. Love it or hate it, it's here to stay!
With that in mind, it would be a good idea to brush up on these lesser known facts about this much talked-about format:
Fact One: Although the IPL has changed the cricketing landscape by revolutionizing the concept of franchise cricket, it was the ECB (England and Wales Cricket Board) that actually cooked up this unique format. The Twenty20 county competition was introduced in 2003 and it was, from the outset, meant to complement the longer formats of the game.
Fact Two: There's little doubt that Chris Gayle is the most sought-after T20 batsman in the world. The Jamaican has plied his trade for teams and franchises all over the globe. He is also the first player to score a ton in T20 internationals. Gayle achieved this feat in the first match of the World T20 2007.
Fact Three: While the ECB came up with this novel format, the first ever T20 international was played by Australia and New Zealand, also known as 'The Trans-Tasman Rivals.'
Fact Four: The shortest T20 international ever played lasted a mere 13 overs (78 balls). This rain-affected match featured New Zealand and Scotland battling it out in London in 2009. The latter scored a respectable 89 for four in their alloted overs. However the Kiwis, powered by Jesse Ryder and Ross Taylor, took their team over the line in six overs!
Fact Five: The largest margin of victory (when it comes to runs) in T20 internationals is 172 runs. A strong Sri Lankan team made easy work of Kenya when they met at the ICC World T20 in 2007. The scores: Sri Lanka - 260/6 in 20 overs; Kenya - 88/10 in 19.3 overs. This also happens to be the largest margin of victory in all of professional T20.
Sri Lanka's 260-run total also happens to be the highest ever recorded in professional T20 cricket.
Read 10 Things You Never Knew About Test Cricket here.
Fact Six: Dimitri Mascarenhas, who represents Kings XI Punjab in the IPL, took the first ever T20 hat-trick in 2004 while playing for his county team, Hampshire. Brett Lee, on the other hand, is the first bowler to take a hat-trick in T20 internationals. The Aussie quick saw the back of three Bangladeshi batsmen in 2007 in Cape Town.
Fact Seven: The Chennai Super Kings vs. Royal Challengers Bangalore encounter in IPL 2010 produced the highest run aggregate in all of professional T20 cricket. The two sides scored a combined 469 runs that night. CSK won that clash by 23 runs at the Chepauk as their 246 proved too much for RCB to chase down.
Fact Eight: King XI Punjab's Adam Gilchrist and Shaun Marsh put together 206 runs for the second wicket in IPL 2011 against RCB. This is the highest partnership for any wicket in all of professional T20.
Fact Nine: While Sachin Tendulkar is the king when it comes to scoring tons in Tests and ODIs, in T20s it's the Chris Gayle show. The dashing left-hander has scored seven centuries in this format--two of these are international hundreds.
Fact Ten: West Indies A and Trinidad & Tobago spinner, Samuel Badree, has the best economy rate in T20 cricket. The leggie has given away just 589 runs in 39 games at an economic rate of 4.40. He has also picked up 38 wickets in the process at an average of 15.50. He could follow Sunil Narine into the IPL next year!
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