T20 might be the most popular format in cricket at the moment, and it has succeeded in enthralling frenzied crowds the world over.
Not many would realize that scoring a lot of runs in the format is actually difficult, considering that one is supposed to prioritise a handsome strike rate over one’s wicket.
In spite of all this, many batsmen have managed to score more than 1000 T20 runs in a calendar year, albeit with franchises and state teams.
Let us take a look at the five Indians who have done so.
5. Suresh Raina
Suresh Raina was once a vital cog in the Indian limited over teams. The former member of the ‘Men in Blue’, along with being one of the leading run-getters in the Indian Premier League, belongs to the state of Uttar Pradesh.
The southpaw is a brilliant T20 batsman, and has been a more-than-handy servant for the Chennai Super Kings. Moreover, he is an electrifying fielder and is extremely aware of match situations.
Adept at facing pressure, Raina proved his true mettle in the 2011 ICC World Cup that India won. Raina has amassed more than 1000 T20 runs in a calendar year twice.
He made 1042 and 1057 runs with respective averages of 47.36 and 34.09 in the years 2010 and 2018, making a case for extraordinary longevity. He made those runs while playing for India, CSK and UP.
4. Shreyas Iyer
One of the most exciting talents on the block off late, Shreyas Iyer has burst onto the international scene for India like a fish takes to water.
The Mumbai cricketer has been lauded by pundits for being very mature for his age. The 24-year-old batsman is an enterprising T20 player and is known for crafting long innings.
In the last IPL season, he captained the Delhi Capitals brilliantly well, and showed that he is a natural at leading his troops.
Iyer has become the answer to India’s legendary ‘No. 4’ woes, and is temperamentally solid.
2019 has been a great year for the young batsman, and Iyer has scored 1095 runs from 32 matches, at an average of 40.55 and a strike rate of 135.51, including 2 centuries and five fifties, while playing for India, DC and Mumbai.
3. Shikhar Dhawan
Shikhar Dhawan is the quintessential go-to-man for India in ICC tournaments, and boy, doesn’t he play!
The left-handed opener has served India for many years now, and has been a proven top-order batsman in the limited over format.
While he might not be the most technically gifted player, his lack of fear and ability to find gaps at will, more than make up for it.
Dhawan is 33 years old, and it is certain that he would don the blue cap for a few more years at least.
In 2018, Shikhar Dhawan scored 1186 runs from 34 matches at an average of 39.53 and a strike rate of 142.71, including ten fifties, while representing India and Sunrisers Hyderabad.
2. Rishabh Pant
Rishabh Pant is a trailblazer by his own right. The young talismanic batsman has been a revelation in the shortest format, even though he has played many an important knock for India in Tests as well.
The 22-year-old wicketkeeper is an exciting talent, and is totally fearless. A ferocious hitter of the cricket ball, the southpaw is a true talent.
The Delhi batsman shot to fame in the IPL, and he has even won the prestigious ICC Emerging Cricketer Award in 2018.
Needless to say, 2018 was the year in which Pant announced himself to the world and international cricket.
His stats in 2018 read 1209 runs from 32 matches, at an average of 41.68 and a strike rate of 172.71, including 2 centuries and 10 fifties. He did this while playing for India, Delhi and Delhi Daredevils (now Capitals).
1. Virat Kohli
Who else, but Virat Kohli, at the top of a record! The Indian captain breaks records for fun, and even though he is at his immaculate best in ODIs and Tests, he is a force to reckon with, in T20s as well.
In fact, he is the only cricketer with an average of over 50 in all three international formats.
The 31-year-old made it to the news when he led the Indian side to victory in the 2008 U-19 World Cup, and since then, there has been no turning back.
The stylish right-hander took on the mantle of being Indian captain, and has ably led the country.
Kohli is second in the list of most T20 runs in a calendar year, after Chris Gayle, and in the year 2016, while playing for India and the Royal Challengers Bangalore, Virat amassed as much as 1614 runs from 31 matches at a jaw-dropping average of 89.66 and a strike rate of 147.12.
He hit 4 hundreds and 14 fifties too, in the process.