The runs flowed for South African IPL stalwarts Faf du Plessis, AB de Villiers and Quinton de Kock in the third week of the tournament, but Kagiso Rabada, the Purple Cap winner in the last tournament, has had a drier time of it in terms of wickets this time around.
Kagiso Rabada has now taken just five wickets in six matches and his economy rate is a mediocre 8.72. He conceded 15 runs in the last over of the match against the Hyderabad Sunrisers, allowing the bottom-placed team in the IPL to force a Super Over, which fortunately the Delhi Capitals won.
Rabada then took one for 38 in four overs against the Bangalore Royal Challengers, having to contend with AB de Villiers in full flow and conceding 22 runs in the 10 balls he bowled to his compatriot. Rabada then conceded 18 runs off the penultimate over against the Kolkata Knight Riders, finishing with none for 31 in his four overs.
AB de Villiers continues to make life easy for the IPL advertisers by producing a spectacular innings practically every week. This time it was the high-flying Delhi Capitals who suffered under his brilliance, De Villiers scoring an explosive 75 not out off 42 balls as the Bangalore Royal Challengers won by just one run.
His other scores were 4 (9) and 3 (9), but De Villiers did become far and away the fastest to 5,000 IPL career runs during his blitz against Delhi, needing just 3,288 balls to reach the landmark. David Warner was second quickest on 3,554 deliveries.
Faf du Plessis is batting with incredible consistency for the Chennai Super Kings, scoring two more half-centuries this week, giving him three in a row in this year’s IPL. He followed up his match-winning 95 not out off just 60 balls last week against Kolkata, with 50 off 41 balls versus Bangalore and 56 (38) against Hyderabad, against whom he also took an incredible catch, running and diving on the boundary.
With these performances, the 36-year-old is showing the Proteas should definitely take him to the T20 World Cup in India later this year.
The Mumbai Indians were perhaps trying to send a message to the under-performing Quinton de Kock when they included Australian Nathan Coulter-Nile as one of their four overseas players in their last game against Rajasthan Royals, but De Kock responded with a man of the match display, firing an unbeaten 70 off just 50 balls to lead his team to victory.
De Kock had scored just 47 runs off 54 deliveries in four innings before that.
David Miller has been peacefully finishing innings for the Rajasthan Royals in the last week, scoring an unbeaten 24 not out off 23 balls against Kolkata and seven not out off four deliveries versus Mumbai.
Chris Morris may not have batted for the Rajasthan Royals in the last week, but he has shown just how effective a bowler he is both up front and at the death. He was superb in the closing overs against Kolkata, taking four for 14 in his last two overs and winning the man of the match award for his overall figures of four for 23 in four overs. He then took two for 33 in four overs against Mumbai.
Imran Tahir is the sort of person who will still behave like an absolute angel even if he is just in the squad carrying drinks, but this week he finally got a game for the Chennai Super Kings and he took the chance with both hands, taking two for 16 in four impressive overs against Bangalore.
Lungi Ngidi also played one game for Chennai this week and took two for 35 in four overs against Hyderabad Sunrisers, dismissing half-centurions and international T20 batsmen in David Warner and Manish Pandey, helping his team to a seven-wicket win and top of the log.
Marco Jansen (Mumbai) and Anrich Nortje (Delhi) did not play in the last week.