Left-arm pacer Trent Boult has made it a habit to get early wickets in powerplay for Rajasthan Royals in Indian Premier League Season 16. Image Credit: AFP

Dubai: Champion pacer Trent Boult has the knack to win key battles. The New Zealand left-arm pacer achieved the 100-wicket landmark in the Indian Premier League when he dismissed Virat Kohli for a golden duck in Bengaluru on Sunday.

Even when other bowlers are getting clobbered, it is hard to score runs off him and the genteel pacer has the habit of sneaking through the defences to push the rivals on the back foot. He has done this time and again in international cricket and it’s no different in the world’s richest Twenty20 franchise league.

Potent Royals attack

Boult does not have the express pace of Umran Malik or Mark Wood, bowling in the late 130 kmph. Still he terrorises the batters. In this IPL, Boult has taken at least one wicket in his first over and sometimes two, giving the potent Rajasthan Royals bowling the added advantage.

What makes the 33-year-old left-arm pacer the most dangerous bowler in world today?

The left-armer keeps it simple. Bowling a stump to stump line, he throws the gauntlet for the batters to go after him. In the process, Boult has the last laugh as the batters tend to miss the line and get bowled or lbw. The pacer also subtly varies his line and length and surprises the batter with a yorker or baits them with a slow bouncer.

Boult Kohli
New Zealander Trent Boult exults after dismissing Virat Kohli for his 100th IPL wicket. Image Credit: AFP

For years, Boult, like some of the modern day greats like Glenn McGrath and James Anderson, target the best in the rival camp and finds a way of getting their scalp. It is what he did against Kohli on a wicket that didn’t have much to offer for the pacers. Glenn Maxwell and Faf du Plessis negated Boult cautiously and scored by making use of the field restrictions to reach 189/9 in 20 overs.

Doing job to perfection

“It is a good surface and a small ground, so 190 is achievable. Got enough power in the shed, but it is not going to be an easy task,” Boult told the broadcasters Star Sports during the innings break.

The New Zealander, who missed the match against Chennai Super Kings, has taken nine wickets in six matches. He might not be on top of the charts for the Purple Cap, but he does his job to perfection, getting early wickets or sending an economical spell, like he did against Lucknow Super Giants, finishing his four-over spell conceding just 16 runs with one wicket.

It’s just the halfway stage in IPL season 16, fans can expect more Boult from the blue this season.