Indian Premier League

IPL 2021 Special: Ranking and Rating the Pacers of each Team

Mumbai Indians, the team with the best set of pacers as we look at the rating and ranking of pacers of all the teams for IPL 2021. 

The Pacers are one of the most crucial elements in any team. Not only do they help bowl crucial overs in the powerplay with the new ball but they also help bowl the most difficult overs, the death overs. They are the ones who set the tone of the bowling attack as the teams rely on them more to take wickets. 

Time and again, we have also seen that the pacers are the ones who take the most number of wickets every year. It is also evident from the Purple cap winners where 11 out of 13 times, the Purple cap has been won by a pacer with Bhuvneshwar Kumar and Dwayne Bravo winning it twice each. 

In general, a team needs at least 3 pacers in the playing 11. Where 1 is a pure Powerplay bowler, other should bowl well in the Powerplay and death overs, the final to bowl well in middle-overs and death overs. Most of the teams are equipped with such pace bowlers, but which team has the best set of pacers for IPL 2021? Let’s find out in this article. 


  • Pacers are classified as Main pacers, Good backup pacers, and other backup pacers, and all are being rated on a scale of 10. However, for the overall rating calculation, the weighted average is taken with higher weightage given to the main pacers. 
  • All pacers are relatively rated with respect to benchmark pacer basis their last two IPL’s performance, and/or their current International and Domestic form.
  • While any player can play an additional role as ”Backup’, main players and good backups should have a unique set of players. 

Benchmark Pacer for IPL 2021: Jasprit Bumrah

Alright then, let’s look at the pacers ranking and rating of each team for IPL 2021. 

#8: Rajasthan Royals – 8

Two Main Pacers: Chris Morris and Mustafizur Rahman

Three Good Backup Pacers: Andrew Tye, Kartik Tyagi, and Jaydev Unadkat,

Other Backup Pacer(s): Shivam Dube, Chetan Sakariya, Akash Singh, and Kuldip Yadav. 

Not that Rajasthan Royals have a poor bowling attack, but the loss of Jofra Archer and Ben Stokes has further dented their rating from 8.4 to 8. Jofra Archer was Rajasthan Royals’ best bowler and player, but his participation for IPL 2021 is a question mark. Similarly, Ben Stokes has been ruled out due to hand injury, and his departure has further dented the rating. 

Nevertheless, Chris Morris and Mustafizur Rahman are RR’s main pacers with a rating of 8.75 and 8.25 respectively. They are followed by  Andrew Tye, Kartik Tyagi, and Jaydev Unadkat with a rating of 8, 7.75, and 7.25 respectively. Chetan Sakariya bowled brilliantly in the first match, and since this is his maiden IPL, he carries a rating of 7. 

Overall, Rajasthan Royals get a weighted average rating of 8 in the pacers category without Jofra Archer and 8.4 with Jofra Archer.

#7: Kolkata Knight Riders – 8.28

Two Main Pacers: Pat Cummins and Lockie Ferguson 

Three Good Backup Pacers: Andre Russell, Prasidh Krishna, and Ben Cutting 

Other Backup Pacer(s): Shivam Mavi, Kamlesh Nagarkoti, Sandeep Warrier, and Vaibhav Arora

For Kolkata Knight Riders, it is either the experienced overseas pacers or inexperienced Indian pacers. There’s no middle ground for them. The experienced overseas pacers, Pat Cummins and Lockie Ferguson are the team’s two main pacers, and they carry a rating of 9 and 8.75 respectively. Both may be experienced, but when it comes to IPL, they are still making inroads.

Coming to good backups, KKR have Andre Russell, Prasidh Krishna, and Ben Cutting in the ranks, and they carry a rating of 8.25, 8, and 7.75 respectively. Of these three, Russell and Prasidh are the ones expected to play most of the matches. Coming to other backups, the good ones include Shivam Mavi and Kamlesh Nagarkoti, and they carry a rating of 7.5 and 7.25 respectively. 

Overall, Kolkata Knight Riders get a weighted average rating of 8.28 in the pacers category.

#6: Royal Challengers Bangalore – 8.33

Two Main Pacers: Kane Richardson and Kyle Jamieson

Three Good Backup Pacers: Navdeep Saini, Mohammed Siraj, and Daniel Sams

Other Backup Pacer(s): Dan Christian and Harshal Patel

RCB are similar to KKR with reliance on overseas pacers more, but with the only exception of Indian pacers being slightly experienced. RCB’s two main pacers are Kane Richardson and Kyle Jamieson, and they have a rating of 8.5 each. While Richardson is more suited for this format, Jamieson was bought in the squad after seeing his Tests heroics.

The Indian pacers, Navdeep Saini and Mohammed Siraj are RCB’s good backups, and both carry a rating of 8.25 each. Of the two, Siraj is preferred more due to his current form and ability to swing the new ball. Daniel Sams is another good bowler who can be handy with his cutters. He carries a rating of 8.25 too. Finally, we have Dan Christian with a rating of 8 and Harshal Patel with a rating of 7.25.  

Overall, Royal Challengers Bangalore get a weighted average rating of 8.33 in the pacers category.

#5: Punjab Kings – 8.37

Two Main Pacers: Mohammed Shami and Jyhe Richardson

Three Good Backup Pacers: Riley Meredith, Chris Jordan, and Arshdeep Singh

Other Backup Pacer(s): Ishan Porel and Moises Henriques 

A right mix of experienced and youth pacers is how you would define Punjab Kings’ pace bowling unit. PBKS have wicket-taker Mohammed Shami as the team’s leading pacer with a rating of 9. BBL overseas stars, Jhye Richardson and Riley Meredith follow him with a rating of 8.5 each.

England’s Chris Jordan is statistically a really good bowler in International format, but in IPL, he has been way below-par. Hence he carries a rating of 8.25. Arshdeep, meanwhile, impressed with his debut performance in IPL 2020, and that has given him a rating of 7.75. The other pacers, Moises Henriques has a rating of 7.75, and talented Ishan Porel carries a rating of 7.   

Overall, Punjab Kings get a weighted average rating of 8.37 in the pacers category.

#4: Chennai Super Kings – 8.53

Two Main Pacers: Shardul Thakur and Deepak Chahar

Three Good Backup Pacers: Dwayne Bravo, Lungi Ngidi, and Sam Curran

Other Backup Pacer(s): Jason Benrendorff, KM Asif, and Hari Reddy

Chennai Super Kings is one team, which neither has too many superstar pacers in their ranks nor they have too many inexperienced cadres in their roaster. All their good pacers carry a very similar and decent rating with Shardul Thakur being the best of them based on the last two year’s performance. 

Shardul carries a rating of 8.75 being the leading pacer of the squad. He is followed by Chahar, Bravo, Curran, and Lungi Ngidi with a rating of 8.5 each. All four have been very similar in performance, and bring unique strengths to the table. Meanwhile, Jason Behrendorff is a good pacer, but hasn’t played much in IPL, and thus carries a rating of 8.25. 

Overall, Chennai Super Kings get a weighted average rating of 8.53 in the pacers category.

#3: Delhi Capitals – 8.54

Two Main Pacers: Kagiso Rabada and Anrich Nortje

Three Good Backup Pacers: Chris Woakes, Ishant Sharma, and Umesh Yadav

Other Backup Pacer(s): Tom Curran, Marcus Stoinis, Avesh Khan, and Lukman Meriwala

One of the two teams alongside Mumbai Indians, who have an excellent two first-choice pacers available with them that can trouble any opposition. Delhi Capitals have the consistency of Kagiso Rabada and the pace battery of Anrich Nortje as the leading pacers for them.

While Rabada has been excellent in the last two years, Nortje impressed with his pace in 2020. In terms of rating, Kagiso Rabada is the second-best bowler overall with a rating of 9.75 and Anrich Nortje follows him with a rating of 8.5 after his stunning debut season.

The good backup, Chris Woakes isn’t a bad bowler either, and he carries a rating of 8.25 to his name. Meanwhile, the experienced Indian pacers duo of Ishant Sharma and Umesh Yadav carry a rating of 8 each to their name. Both are Team India’s first-choice pacers in Test matches, but haven’t been quite useful in T20 format. 

Overall, Delhi Capitals get a weighted average rating of 8.54 in the pacers category.

#1: Sunrisers Hyderabad – 8.57

Two Main Pacers: Bhuvneshwar Kumar and T Natarajan

Three Good Backup Pacers: Jason Holder, Sandeep Sharma, and Siddarth Kaul

Other Backup Pacer(s): Khaleel Ahmed, Basil Thampi, and Vijay Shankar

No surprises here as Sunrisers Hyderabad have traditionally been a fantastic bowling unit with pacers being their heart line alongside Rashid Khan. They are the only team who can play an all-Indian pace attack, and still, come out stronger given the talent they have in their roaster.  

Bhuvneshwar Kumar is the team’s leading pacer, and he carries a rating of 9. The latest Indian pace sensation, T Natarajan isn’t far behind with a rating of 8.75. Sandeep Sharma has been a consistent performer in IPL, and he carries a rating of 8.5. 

Siddharth Kaul and Khaleel Ahmed aren’t bad options either, but given the lack of IPL game practice, they have a marginally less rating of 8.25 and 8 respectively. Jason Holder is SRH’s good overseas pacer option. He was excellent for SRH in 2020, and being a death overs specialist, he carries a rating of 8.5 to his name.  

Overall, Sunrisers Hyderabad get a weighted average rating of 8.57 in the pacers category.

#1: Mumbai Indians – 8.80

Two Main Pacers: Jasprit Bumrah and Trent Boult

Three Good Backup Pacers: Adam Milne, Hardik Pandya, and  Nathan Coulter-Nile

Other Backup Pacer(s): Marco Jensen, James Neesham, Dhawal Kulkarni, Kieron Pollard, and Mohsin Khan

Was there any doubt on who has the best set of pacers among all the teams? Mumbai Indians have the benchmark pacer, Jasprit Bumrah as the leading pacer of the squad. He is always supported by the thunderbolt, Tent Boult. Boult has been a great IPL performer, and he carries a rating of 9.25.

The overseas trio of Adam Milne, Nathan Coulter-Nile, and Marco Jansen form a formidable overseas pace attack. While Mumbai Indians are currently playing Marco Jansen as their third pacer, While Counter-Nile and Adam Mile Mile are a slightly better option; especially Counter-Nile. Coming to the rating, Counter-Nile and Adam Mile have a rating of 8.25, whereas Jansen has a rating of 8.

Hardik Pandya, who doesn’t bowl much these days is a good backup option, and he carries a rating of 8.25. Meanwhile, there are a few more good pace options like James Neesham, Dhawal Kulkarni, and Kieron Pollard, and they carry a rating of 7.75, 7.5, and 7.25 respectively. 

Overall, Mumbai Indians get a weighted average rating of 8.80 in the pacers category.

Thanks for reading! Looking at the ranking of each team, which team do you think has the best set of pacers in IPL 2021? Please email your thoughts to

ALSO READ: IPL 2021 StatsWizard: Predicting the Group Stage Team Standings

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