Former India opener Aakash Chopra has picked his best XI consisting of the top performers of the recently concluded Indian Premier League 2022. While the Orange Cap winner Jos Buttler headlined his best XI, some top performers like Rashid Khan, Dinesh Karthik, Umran Malik, and Mohsin Khan failed to make it to the cut.
The cricketer-turned-commentator picked the players by their usual playing positions while sticking to the norm of selecting seven Indian players and four overseas players. Aakash Chopra shared his best XI of the IPL 2022 on his official YouTube channel on Tuesday morning.
Jos Buttler headlines the Aakash Chopra’s best IPL 2022 XI
The former right-handed opener picked the Orange Cap winner Jos Buttler in the dual role of the opener and the wicketkeeper.
“If you have to pick an opener, close your eyes and think, only one name comes, that’s Jos the boss Buttler. Buttler has to be the No. 1 opener in this entire tournament. He has done an unbelievable job. I have kept him as the keeper,” elaborated Chopra on Buttler’s selection.
Chopra picked LSG’s skipper KL Rahu as Buttler’s partner at the top. He picked him ahead of Quinton de Kock and Shubman Gill and explained the reasoning behind the same –
“Along with him, I have kept KL Rahul. I thought about Quinton de Kock and Shubman Gill but KL Rahul – more than 600 runs, two centuries. Once again eat, sleep and score 600 runs in the IPL. Form is temporary, KL Rahul is permanent.”
Aakash Chopra preferred Rahul Tripathi at number three ahead of Deepak Hooda and he selected Hardik Pandya at number four while also naming him the skipper of the side. He explained:
“I had done a poll for No. 3 – Deepak Hooda or Rahul Tripathi. I have picked Rahul Tripathi, about 80% have also voted for Rahul Tripathi. After that, my Player of the Tournament, his name is Hardik Pandya – he is a captain, bowler and batter. He is the captain of this team as well.”
Aakash Chopra then selected big-hitting Englishman Liam Livingstone at number five. Meanwhile, he selected the Proteas southpaw David Miller ahead of Dinesh Karthik for the finishing duties. Chopra observed:
“At No. 5, I have got Liam Livingstone. He is a six-hitting machine and has done amazingly well this year. At No. 6, some thinking was required on who could be kept – DK (Dinesh Karthik) could have been there but I have actually gone with David Miller because he has had a season that is one to remember.”
At the same time, Aakash Chopra filled all four overseas slots by selecting Andre Russell as another all-rounder in the team. For the unversed, the big West Indian all-rounder had another great season with 335 runs and 17 wickets under his belt in 14 matches for KKR.
“At No. 7, I have got Andre Russell. I am sending him slightly down in the batting order but he can go up if the situation demands. You might say that I have fewer bowling options, that’s not the case, I have Hardik Pandya and Liam Livingstone as two other guys who can bowl,” said the former Indian opener while explaining the reason behind Dre Russ’s selection.
Aakash Chopra selected the Purple Cap winner Yuzvendra Chahal as the only spinner in the team.
“In my four bowlers, there is one spinner, his name is Yuzi Chahal. He is the Purple Cap holder. Rashid Khan and Wanindu Hasaranga could have also been there here but my four overseas slots are over,” said Chopra while elaborating Chahal’s selection.
The 44-years-old chose Avesh Khan, Mohammed Shami, and Arshdeep Singh as the pace battery of his best XI of the IPL 2022. Chopra explained:
“Avesh Khan is in my side. I was thinking about Mohsin Khan, Umran Malik and Prasidh Krishna but I am still going with Avesh Khan – fewer bad days. After that, I have gone with Mohammed Shami, he was unbelievable. Last but not the least, at No. 11 is Arshdeep Singh. In my opinion, he has been the standout bowler once again.”
Aakash Chopra’s IPL 2022 XI: Jos Buttler, KL Rahul, Rahul Tripathi, Hardik Pandya (C), Liam Livingstone, David Miller, Andre Russell, Yuzvendra Chahal, Avesh Khan, Mohammed Shami, and Arshdeep Singh.