The Indian Premier League (IPL) began in 2008 with eight city franchises battling each other to win the coveted trophy. Chennai Super Kings, Punjab Kings, Rajasthan Royals, Mumbai Indians, Kolkata Knight Riders, Delhi Capitals, Deccan Chargers and Royal Challengers Bangalore were the eight teams in the inaugural IPL season.
Over the years, the number of franchises has changed many times. Only five of the original eight teams have played in all 14 seasons of the league.
One of the most important things in the IPL is consistency. Each team plays around 14-16 league games and you need to perform well regularly to finish in the top four. A top four finish in the points table guarantees the team a place in the playoffs.
Qualifying for the playoffs is the first step to becoming champions. While the Punjab Kings, Delhi Capitals and Royal Challengers Bangalore have played in every season so far, they are not among the top three teams with the most playoff appearances.
Instead, the following three franchises have shown remarkable consistency since 2008, finishing in the top four of the points standings the most times.
Chennai Super Kings – 11 times
Despite missing the 2016 and 2017 seasons due to suspension, the Chennai Super Kings (CSK) hold the record for the most IPL playoff appearances by a franchise.
They participated in the other 12 seasons and only missed the playoffs in 2020. The MS Dhoni team will enter the IPL 2022 as defending champions.
It will be interesting to see if they can finish in the top four for the 12th time this season.
Mumbai Indians – 9 times
Mumbai Indians (MI) failed to impress much in their early seasons. MI finished in the bottom four of the points table during the 2008 and 2009 seasons, but turned things around in 2010 to top the standings.
MI also made the playoffs in 2011 and 2012. They ended their championship drought in 2013, winning their first trophy with Rohit Sharma. MI became unstoppable after that as they won the 2015, 2017, 2019 and 2020 seasons.
The Mumbai-based franchise also made a playoff appearance in 2014, bringing its overall tally to nine.
Kolkata Knight Riders – 7 times
Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) and Royal Challengers Bangalore have finished in the top four seven times. But the Kolkata-based franchise edged out Bangalore for a spot on this list by virtue of their two championship wins.
The Knight Riders did not finish in the top four in the first three seasons. The team management decided to renew the squad after the failures. Gautam Gambhir took the reins of the franchise and guided them to the playoffs in 2011, 2012, 2014, 2016 and 2017.
Dinesh Karthik led KKR to the playoffs in 2018, while last year they reached the finals under the leadership of Eoin Morgan.