Probuddha Bhattacharjee ∙ Updated: May 29 2023, 4:17 PM | 6 Min Read

Top 5 Centuries in Cricket: IPL History

image-lhxfeawaVirat Kohli scored a century with four stitches on his hand (Source: Twitter)

The Indian Premier League has always been a platform for new and upcoming talents to express themselves and get noticed in the cricketing world. Over the years, the IPL has given us some memorable knocks by some of the game's greats. 

Let's take a look at the top five centuries in IPL history:

5. AB de Villiers (133* off 59 balls, RCB vs MI in 2015)

Any batting list is incomplete without one of the greatest players of the format, AB de Villiers. It was the 46th match of IPL 2015, where RCB was up against MI. 

The Royal Challengers Bangalore batted first in the match, and the cricketing fraternity witnessed the highest class of batsmanship. RCB lost their first wicket in the form of Chris Gayle (13 off 12) when the team's score was 20 runs in 3.1 overs. 

image-lhxfin9tAB de Villiers played a destructive knock against MI in IPL 2015 (Source: Twitter)

At this stage, ABD joined hands with Virat Kohli in the middle, and together the duo took a toll on the Mumbai Indians bowling line-up. They stitched a partnership of 215 runs off just 101 deliveries and took the team's total to a massive 235 at the end of the 20 overs. 

De Villiers scored 133 runs off 59 deliveries, hitting 19 fours and four sixes in the process. His strike rate in the innings was a staggering 225.42. But, barring the numbers, the array of strokes and the level of batsmanship that De Villiers displayed during the innings makes this one of the best centuries in the history of the cash-rich league. 

Mumbai Indians managed to score 196 runs in their 20 overs and RCB emerged victorious in the match by 39 runs. 

4. Virat Kohli (113 off 50 balls, RCB vs KXIP in 2016)

The Indian stalwart Virat Kohli showed why he is the best in the world during IPL 2016. He scored four centuries in the season and finished the tournament with 973 runs, which till now remains the highest by any batter in one season. 

Out of the four centuries that Kohli scored in 2016, the best was the one that came against the Kings XI Punjab (now Punjab Kings). Unfortunately, he had injuries on his finger and had four stitches when he walked out to bat in this match. 

image-lhxfkvlhVirat Kohli scored an iconic 100 against KXIP in IPL 2016 (Source: Twitter)

RCB won the toss and batted first in the match. However, as Gayle and Kohli started the proceedings for the team, the 'Modern Master' did not at all look in any kind of discomfort. On the contrary, he looked in supreme touch and stitched a partnership of 147 runs for the opening wicket with Chris Gayle. 

After Gayle was dismissed, Kohli shifted gears and ensured that RCB reached a stellar total of 211 runs for the loss of three wickets at the end of the 20 overs. Kohli scored 113 runs off 50 balls, and his innings was decorated with 12 fours and eight sixes. Kohli's perseverance and determination in this inning make it find a spot on this list.

3. Shane Watson (117* off 57 balls, CSK vs SRH in IPL 2018)

In the final of the IPL 2018, Chennai Super Kings took the field against the Sunrisers Hyderabad. Hyderabad won the toss and batted first in the match. They posted 178 runs for the loss of six wickets in their 20 overs. Kane Williamson (47 off 36) and Yusuf Pathan (45 off 25) played crucial roles, taking the team to a respectable total in the final match. 

image-lhxfr1vvShane Watson scored a 100 against SRH in the finals of IPL 2018 (Source: Twitter)

When CSK came out to bat, Bhuvneswar Kumar brought out his best, making life difficult for the CSK openers. CSK lost Faf du Plessis in the fourth over and looked under great pressure. But Watson kept calm and bit his time in the middle; it took one shot for the mighty Aussie to regain his flow. 

Once Watson got his touch back, he looked unstoppable. He scored a sensational hundred and remained unbeaten on 117 off 57 balls guiding CSK to their third title win by eight wickets. This remains one of the best hundreds in the history of the IPL because of the sheer determination he showed at the beginning of the innings when Kumar was troubling him. The way he changed gears and dominated the bowlers during the innings will be something many cricket fans will remember for a long time. 

2. Chris Gayle (175* off 66 balls, RCB vs PWI in IPL 2013)

In the 31st match of the IPL 2013, the cricket fans were treated by Chris Gayle at his destructive best. Playing against the now-disbanded Pune Warriors India, Royal Challengers Bangalore batted first and from the beginning of the innings, it looked like, Chris Gayle was there to bat the opposition out of the game. 

image-lhxftjnpChris Gayle's 175* is still the highest indivudual score in IPL (Source: Twitter)

Gayle played an epic knock of 175 runs from 66 deliveries and remained unbeaten. The West Indian was aided by a fiery cameo of AB de Villiers (31 off 8), and RCB reached a mammoth total of 263 runs for the loss of five wickets in 20 overs.

The RCB bowlers restricted the Pune batters to just 133 runs, leading to a massive win for RCB by 130 runs. But the day would forever be etched in the memories of cricket fans, especially RCB fans, for the very special knock that Gayle played. He displayed the exact way the power game should be played in this format of the game. 

1.Brendon McCullum 158* off 73 balls vs RCB in IPL 2008

This was the inaugural match of the mega league, and Brendon McCullum set up its tone with a sensational knock. KKR batted first in the match, and while opening the innings, McCullum scored 158 runs off 73 balls, hitting ten fours and 13 sixes. RCB posted a mammoth total of 222 runs for the loss of three wickets in their 20 overs and gave a glimpse of how the tournament will entertain the audience in the upcoming seasons.

image-lhxfvbo2Brendon McCullum scored a century in the very first IPL match in IPL (Source: Twitter)

RCB was bundled out for just 82 runs, and KKR managed to win the match by 140 runs. Besides the big win and how KKR dominated the match, the significance of McCullum's century lies in the fact that a new idea like IPL became an immediate hit because of this inning. He ensured the audience of pure entertainment, and IPL made a place in the audience's hearts in a natal phase.