IPL 2021: First 7 days of IPL in UAE, 5 ‘newbies’ who have put IPL on fire, 5 ‘IPL veterans’ who are struggling big time

MI vs KKR in IPL 2021: Kolkata Knight Riders opener Venkatesh Iyer takes IPL by storm, scores quickfire fifty against Mumbai Indians
MI vs KKR in IPL 2021: Kolkata Knight Riders opener Venkatesh Iyer takes IPL by storm, scores quickfire fifty against Mumbai Indians
IPL 2021 – IPL Hits & Misses: We are nearing the end of the first week of IPL 2021’s return and the tournament has lived up to its hype with some blockbuster action over the last few days. While the likes of Delhi Capitals and Chennai Super Kings have cruised, the likes of Mumbai Indians and Royal Challengers Bangalore have struggled to make it a five-legged race for the playoffs. While the veterans have struggled to adapt and return to the top of their game, the youngsters have taken up the mantle and have stolen headlines over the last few days.
IPL 2021: First 7 days of IPL in UAE, 5 ‘newbies’ who have put IPL on fire, 5 ‘IPL veterans’ who are struggling big time
IPL 2021 – IPL Hits & Misses:
5 Newbies who have lit up the IPL 2021 
1. Kartik Tyagi
Kartik Tyagi put in a man of the match performance in the Rajasthan Royals win against Punjab Kings in their Phase 2 opener. The former U-19 star did the unthinkable by defending just four runs in the final over to hand the Royals an unlikely two-run win to help them stay in the hunt for the playoffs. Kartik Tyagi has managed to carve a place for himself in the XI ahead of Jaydev Unadkat, and performances like the one against Punjab Kings are likely to help him continue his run in the side.
2. Venkatesh Iyer
Two games into his IPL career, Venkatesh Iyer has pundits comparing him to Yuvraj such has been his impact on the Kolkata Knight Riders. Scores of 41* and 53 at the top of the order have propelled the two-time champions into playoff contention and his swashbuckling ways have been a fresh restart for KKR. Venkatesh Iyer will be aiming to continue his rich vein of form over the next few games, with Eoin Morgan and Co aiming for a top-four finish.
3. Varun Chakravarthy
Varun Chakravarthy’s rise over the last two seasons has been nothing short of meteoric, with the KKR star making it to India’s T20 World Cup squad. The mystery spinner has started the Phase 2 impressively, picking up a three-wicket haul against RCB to trigger their collapse, which saw Virat Kohli and Co. bowled out for 92. In the next game against Mumbai Indians, Chakravarthy was wicketless, but bowled with great accuracy, stipping the run flow, ending his spell by conceding just 22 in his four overs.
4. Ruturaj Gaikwad
Ruturaj Gaikwad has continued where he left off in Phase 1 and has seen him being one of the contenders for the Orange Cap. On a difficult track against Mumbai Indians, Gaikwad stole the show with a magnificent 88* to guide his team to victory. Against RCB on Friday, the CSK opener scored a fine 38, giving MS Dhoni and Co. the perfect start to chase down the total on a tricky Sharjah surface.
5. Arshdeep Singh
Arshdeep Singh did everything right in the opening game against the Rajasthan Royals, picking up a maiden five-wicket haul. The left-arm seamer chipped in with wickets at key phases in a man of the match worthy performance, only to be overshadowed by Kartik Tyagi’s last over heroics. Arshdeep Singh broke the deadlock by scalping the dangerous-looking Evin Lewis, before seeing the back of Liam Livingstone and Mahipal Lomror. He finished his spell with the wickets of Chetan Sakariya and Kartik Tyagi, to pick up his maiden five-wicket haul.
IPL 2021: 5 ‘newbies’ who have put IPL on fire, 5 ‘IPL veterans’ who are struggling big time
IPL 2021 – IPL Hits & Misses:
5 veterans who have struggled in IPL 2021
1. AB de Villiers
AB de Villiers is the pillar of RCB’s batting and the South African veteran has struggled to make a sizeable contribution in the first two games back. Scores of 0 and 1 are very unlike AB de Villiers, and with his side on a seven-game winless run in the UAE, the onus will be on the South African to turn a corner and return to his very best in the coming days.
2. David Warner
David Warner has had a forgettable IPL 2021, and his return to Sunrisers playing XI again was met with yet another failure. The Aussie was dismissed for a three-ball duck to continue his wretched run of form as SRH hit a nadir, with seven losses in eight games. While the 2016 champions have very little chance of making it to the playoffs, David Warner will be seeking to get back into his best touch, especially with the T20 World Cup around the corner.
3. Chris Gayle
Now 42, Chris Gayle is not indispensable anymore as the West Indian cricketer sat out of Punjab Kings opener against Rajasthan Royals. KL Rahul and the team management opted for young guns in Aiden Markram and Nicholas Pooran ahead of the Universe Boss, who has struggled for his best form over the last few months.
4. Imran Tahir
Imran Tahir would relish bowling on sluggish, turning pitches in the UAE, but such is CSK’s squad, that the South African is finding himself on the fringes of the squad. Tahir was the purple cap winner in 2019 and did well in the limited opportunities he received, but MS Dhoni has placed his reliance on Moeen Ali and Ravindra Jadeja to get through the middle overs.
5. Eoin Morgan
KKR and England captain Eoin Morgan has been struggling in the IPL this season, and the left-hander failed at yet another opportunity, giving away his wicket against the Mumbai Indians cheaply. Morgan’s form has been a huge cause of concern for the two-time champions, and the England ace will have to do a lot better should the side harbour ambitions of making it to the playoffs.
IPL 2021 – IPL Hits & Misses: