Indian Premier League

IPL 2021 UAE Special: Ranking and Rating the Middle-order of all Teams

AB de Villiers, the best middle-order batsman as we look at the rating and ranking of Middle-order of all the teams for IPL 2021 UAE. 

It is often said that the Openers lay the foundation, but a solid middle-order is needed to give that foundation a proper structure. Some of the top-performing teams in IPL have a strong middle-order, and the results are shown with their points table Standings. Be it CSK, MI, RCB, or Delhi Capitals, all have a solid middle-order. 

IPL 2021 is witnessed by a plethora of middle-order batsmen, but the leader of this pack is undoubtedly Ab de Villiers. The RCBian has been the best middle-order batsman in the last few years, and has single-handedly managed to win a lot of matches for his side.

With him as the benchmark, how are RCB and other teams placed when it comes to the middle-order category? So, in this article, we will take a look at the rating and ranking of the middle-order of each Team for IPL 2021 in UAE. Before that, let’s skim through the methodology by which we arrived at this rating and ranking. 


  • Middle-order batsmen are classified as Main batsmen, Good backup batsmen, and other backup batsmen, 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 players. 
  • All middle-order players are relatively rated with respect to benchmark middle-order players 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 Middle-order Batsman for IPL 2021: AB de Villiers

Alright then, let’s look at the middle-order batsmen ranking and rating of each team for IPL 2021 UAE. 

#8: Rajasthan Royals – 8.26

Three Main Middle-order Players: Sanju Samson, David Miller, and Rahul Tewatia

Two Good Backup Middle-order Players: Chris Morris and Shivam Dube

Other Backup Middle-order Player(s): Riyan Parag, Mahipal Lomror, and Anuj Rawat

Not a good position to be in, but the departure of Ben Stokes, Ajinkya Rahane, and Steve Smith has seriously dented the middle-order rating of Rajasthan Royals. They have Sanju Samson as their best middle-order batsman with a rating of 9 and David Miller as their second-best middle-order batsman with a rating of 8.5. 

Barring these two, there’s either inexperience or less potential to look at. Rahul Tewatia is RR’s third-best middle-order batsman with a rating of 8.25. Whereas Chris Morris and Shivam Dube, and Riyan Parag follow him with a sub-par rating of 8 or below. These aren’t encouraging signs, but RR will have to accept this harsh reality, and perform to its potential from here on. 

Overall, Rajasthan Royals get a weighted average rating of 8.26 in the middle-order category.

#7: Punjab Kings – 8.30

Three Main Middle-order Players: Nicholas Pooran, Chris Gayle, and Moises Henriques 

Two Good Backup Middle-order Players: Mandeep Singh and Deepak Hooda

Other Backup Middle-order Player(s): Fabien Allen, Sarfaraz Khan and Shahrukh Khan

The team with the strongest opening combination is actually very thin when it comes to their middle-order rating. The under-performing Nicholas Pooran is their best middle-order batsman with a rating of 8.75. Chris Gayle, who is primarily an opening batsman, but is played as a middle-order batsman for PBKS is an equivalent with a rating of 8.75. 

But that’s about it for PBKS. The departure of Dawid Malan makes their middle-order and lower middle-order slightly thin with Deepak Hooda, Moises Henriques, Fabien Allen, and Mandeep Singh with a rating of 8 each. Apart from these, there’s inexperience but potential of Sarfaraz Khan and Shahrukh Khan with a sub 8 rating.

Overall, Punjab Kings get a weighted average rating of 8.30 in the middle-order category.

#6: Sunrisers Hyderabad – 8.41

Three Main Middle-order Players: Kane Williamson, Manish Pandey, and Mohammad Nabi

Two Good Backup Middle-order Players: Sherfane Rutherford and Kedar Jadhav

Other Backup Middle-order Player(s): Jason Holder, Vijay Shankar, Priyam Garg, and Virat Singh

Sunrisers Hyderabad have the quality of Kane Williamson and Manish Pandey as their two best middle-order batsmen with a rating of 9.25 and 9 respectively. Both are strong middle-order batsmen, but apart from these 2, there’s not much to look at when we talk about stability.

Mohammad Nabi is the team’s third-best middle-order batsman with a rating of 8.25. Whereas newly added Sherfane Rutherford has a rating of 8. However, none of these two are sure-shot starters. The team then has the Indian duo of Kedar Jadhav and Vijay Shankar as decent backups. Apart from these two, there’s also Jason Holder, Priyam Garg, and Virat Singh. 

Overall, Sunrisers Hyderabad get a weighted average rating of 8.41 in the middle-order category

#5: Kolkata Knight Riders – 8.44

Three Main Middle-order Players: Andre Russell, Eoin Morgan, and Dinesh Karthik

Two Good Backup Middle-order Players: Shakib Al Hasan and  Rahul Tripathi 

Other Backup Middle-order Player(s): Karun Nair, Ben Cutting, and Gurkeerat Singh. 

So much destruction in the three names, Andre Russell, Eoin Morgan, and Dinesh Karthik, but when it comes to actual performance, there’s not much to talk about them in the last few years. Andre Russell is the team’s best middle-order batsman with a rating of 9. Whereas Eoin Morgan and Dinesh Karthik follow him with a rating of 8.5 each.

Talking about backups, there’s Rahul Tripathi, who usually bats at 3 with a rating of 8.25. Then there’s Ben Cutting and Shakib Al Hasan with a rating of 8 each. Apart from these, KKR have Karun Nair and Gurkeerat Singh to look at from the middle-order backup perspective. 

Overall, Kolkata Knight Riders get a weighted average rating of 8.44 in the middle-order category.

#4: Royal Challengers Bangalore – 8.68

Three Main Middle-order Players: AB de Villiers, Glenn Maxwell, and Tim David

Two Good Backup Middle-order Players: Daniel Christian and Wanindu Hasaranga 

Other Backup Middle-order Player(s): Sachin Baby, Rajat Patidar, and Shahbaz Ahmed. 

The presence of the benchmark Ab de Villiers, hot in form Glenn Maxwell, and a fresh middle-order face Tim David makes RCB’s middle-order the fourth-best in the competition. While Tim may not be the first choice for the team, the duo of AB and Maxi is too hot to handle. While Ab had a rating of 10, Maxi has a rating of 9 and Tim David has a rating of 8.25.

Talking about backups, RCB are decent in this area with Daniel Christian and Wanindu Hasaranga as good backups with a rating of 8 each. Barring these 5, RCB have Rajat Patidar, Sachin Baby, and Shahbaz Ahmed as decent backup options. The team can also get Virat Kohli in the middle-order to further boost it. 

Overall, Royal Challengers Bangalore get a weighted average rating of 8.69 in the middle-order category.

#3: Chennai Super Kings – 8.70

Three Main Middle-order Players: Ravindra Jadeja, Moeen Ali, and MS Dhoni

Two Good Backup Middle-order Players: Suresh Raina and Ambati Rayudu 

Other Backup Middle-order Player(s): Sam Curran, Dwayne Bravo, and N Jagadeesan

The rise of all-rounders, Ravindra Jadeja and Moeen Ali in the batting department has made CSK’s already strong middle-order further strong. Both have been brilliantly contributing with the bat for CSK with Moeen Ali at the top and Ravindra Jadeja in the death overs. While Jadeja has a rating of 9, Moeen Ali has a rating of 8.75. 

CSK’s captain hasn’t had a good time in the middle with the bat, but the old horse is still one of the fittest and fastest in the middle with a rating of 8.75. Only a matter of time before MS Dhoni gets back to his best. Apart from Dhoni, CSK also have Suresh Raina, Ambati Rayudu, and Sam Curran as good backups – although all three are first-choice players for CSK. 

Overall, Chennai Super Kings get a weighted average rating of 8.70 in the middle-order category.

#2: Delhi Capitals – 8.74

Three Main Middle-order Players: Rishabh Pant, Shreyas Iyer, and Marcus Stoinis

Two Good Backup Middle-order Players: Steve Smith and Shimron Hetmyer

Other Backup Middle-order Player(s): Ajinkya Rahane, Sam Biings, Lalit Yadav, Axar Patel, and Tom Curran

Delhi Capitals’ fresh and young captain for IPL 2021, Rishabh Pant leads the middle-order category for Delhi Capitals with a rating of 9.25. Although not in his prime form as he was in 2019 and before, he is still their key middle-order batsman. He is followed by Shreyas Iyer at 9 and Marcus Stoinis at 8.75. 

Apart from the 3, Delhi Capitals have another strong overseas trio of Steve Smith, Sam Billings, and Shimron Hetmyer as strong backups. While Smith has a rating of 8.5, Hetmyer and Billings have a rating of 8.25 each. Barring these 6, Delhi Capitals can also fall back to Ajinkya Rahane, Lalit Yadav, Axar Patel, and Tom Curran. 

Overall, Delhi Capitals get a weighted average rating of 8.74 in the middle-order category.

#1: Mumbai Indians – 8.81

Three Main Middle-order Players: Hardik Pandya, Kieron Pollard, and Suryakumar Yadav

Two Good Backup Middle-order Players: Ishan Kishan and Krunal Pandya

Other Backup Middle-order Player(s): James Neesham, Saurabh Tiwari, and Jayant Yadav

The rise in form of Suryakumar Yadav and Kieron Pollard and the presence of Hardik Pandya and Ishan Kishan make Mumbai Indians’ middle-order the strongest in the competition. Kieron Pollard is the team’s best middle-order batsman with a rating of 9.5. He is followed by Suryakumar Yadav with a rating of 9.25. Hardik isn’t far either with a rating of 9. 

Ishan Kishan and Krunal Pandya’s form may have dipped, but are still good middle-order backups to have with a rating of 8.5 and 7.75 respectively. MI can also look at Saurabh Tiwari as a decent backup option. In practical, barring Saurabh Tiwari, all the other mentioned players are confirmed starters in the team.

Overall, Mumbai Indians get a weighted average rating of 8.81 in the middle-order category.

So, that’s how the middle-order ranking and ratings stand for IPL 2021 UAE. 

Thanks for reading! Looking at the ranking and rating, which middle-order batsman do you like the most in IPL 2021 UAE? Please email your thoughts to

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