With odds stacked against them, bowlers have a hard time in the IPL. They have to contend with the two-bouncer-per-over rule, flat tracks, smaller boundaries, power plays, and more. Despite the odds, some bowlers have the skills and temperament to take wickets consistently.
IPL honours such bowlers with the Purple Cap. Call it the ultimate recognition of a bowler’s performance towards the team cause. From Sohail Tanvir to Kagiso Rabada, here’s a list of all Purple Cap holders across 14 glorious editions of IPL. A side note – four of them are Indians.
1. IPL 2008: Sohail Tanvir
Led by Shane Warne, Rajasthan Royals romped home in the inaugural edition of the IPL. The Pakistani pacer, Sohail Tanvir had a crucial role in the franchise’s title victory. He finished the season with 22 scalps in 11 games at an astounding average of 12.09 and a strike rate of 11.22.
2. IPL 2009: RP Singh
RP Singh was a skilful left-arm fast-medium bowler who could hit the right lengths and extract seam. He came into his own in the seam-friendly South African conditions, accounting for 23 wickets, averaging 18.13. His effort was instrumental in helping Deccan Chargers clinch the title.
3. IPL 2010: Pragyan Ojha
The second Indian and the first spinner to don the coveted cap, Ojha was an attacking leg-spinner with an appetite for wickets. In the 2010 edition, he ended up with 21 scalps at an average of 20.42. His strike rate (16.8) was impressive and so was his economy (7.29).
4. IPL 2011: Lasith Malinga
The iconic Lankan speedster peaked by 2011, and it showed in his IPL performance. Malinga featured in all 16 matches for Mumbai Indians, taking 28 wickets, averaging 13.39 and striking at 13.5. Malinga is the highest wicket-taker in IPL history with 170 scalps.
5. IPL 2012: Morne Morkel
The South African pace spearhead was in the thick of things in 2012 for Delhi Capitals. With accurate line and length and lively pace, batsmen found it hard to get the better of Morkel. He raked in 25 wickets in 16 outings while giving away 7.19 runs per over and striking at 15.1.
6. IPL 2013: Dwayne Bravo
Come 2013, Dwayne Bravo was virtually unplayable for even the accomplished batsmen. With pinpoint accuracy, he accounted for 32 wickets in 18 outings at an economy of 7.19. Bravo’s 32 wickets are the highest for any bowler in one season, a mark that stands to this day.
7. IPL 2014: Mohit Sharma
Mohit couldn’t bowl Chennai Super Kings to the title though, he was mighty impressive. With a smooth action and tight line and length, The Haryana speedster dismissed 23 batsmen in 17 games and averaged 19.65. Throughout the edition, Mohit struck a wicket in every 14 balls.
8. IPL 2015: Dwayne Bravo
Bravo repeated the Purple Cap performance this year too to become the first bowler to do so. The West Indian dismissed 26 batsmen in 17 games while giving away 8.14 runs per over. Yet again, Bravo cemented his reputation as the leading death-over specialist in white-ball cricket.
9. IPL 2016: Bhubaneswar Kumar:
It was high time for a talented bowler like Bhubaneswar Kumar to come good. He came good and how. Bhubaneswar helped himself to the Purple Cap with 23 scalps, averaging at 21.3 and striking at 17.2. His lively pace, subtle variations and ability to move the ball helped his cause.
10. IPL 2017: Bhubaneswar Kumar:
Yet again, Bhubaneswar Kumar struck gold to become the only bowler to earn Purple caps in a row. He improved his previous year’s performance with a total of 26 dismissals in 14 outings at an economy of 7.05. Bhubaneswar averaged 14.19 and took a wicket in every 12th ball.
11. IPL 2018: Andrew Tye
The Aussie white-ball specialist was a revelation in the 2018 edition. With a hat-trick and a well-deserved fifer, Andrew dismissed 24 batsmen in 14 games to claim the Purple Cap.
12. IPL 2019: Imran Tahir
The 40-year old Tahir pulled up a surprise to emerge as the oldest Purple Cap winner in 2019. He ran through 26 batsmen in 17 outings, giving away 6.69 runs per over and taking a wicket in every 14.84 balls. As obvious as it is, each wicket was followed by an endless victory lap.
13. IPL 2020: Kagiso Rabada:
Rabada has been around for a while but in 2020, he came of age. The South African pacer stamped his authority with 30 dismissals in 17 innings while averaging 18.26.
Are you eagerly waiting to see who will join the illustrious list? Bookmark this page!