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Can Pant lead Delhi Capitals to IPL title?

By RAJNEESH GUPTA
April 09, 2021 23:26 IST
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IMAGE: Delhi Capitals have gone from strength to strength in the last few years -- finishing third in 2019 before finishing runners up last year to the Mumbai Indians. Photograph: BCCI
 

Delhi Capitals will aim to build on the success of IPL 2020, where they finished runners-up, as they look to land their maiden IPL title.

Delhi were rocked by injury to Captain Shreyas Iyer, but the in-form Rishabh Pant is capable of leading the team to the title on his own.

A solid batting line-up coupled with a potent pace attack and experienced spinners makes Delhi Capitals strong title contenders.

Squad:

 AgeBatsBowlsRoleIPL games
Rishabh Pant 23 Left-handed   Captain/'keeper 68
Shikhar Dhawan 35 Left-handed Right-arm off-break Batsman 176
Ajinkya Rahane 32 Right-handed Right-arm medium Batsman 149
Steve Smith 31 Right-handed Right-arm leg-break Batsman 95
Prithvi Shaw 21 Right-handed Right-arm off-break Batsman 38
Shimron Hetmyer 24 Left-handed Right-arm leg-break Batsman 17
Sam Billings 29 Right-handed   Wicket-keeper 22
Vishnu Vinod 27 Right-handed   Wicket-keeper 3
Marcus Stoinis 31 Right-handed Right-arm fast-medium All-rounder 46
Chris Woakes 32 Right-handed Right-arm fast-medium All-rounder 18
Ripal Patel 25 Right-handed Right-arm medium-fast All-rounder 0
Lalit Yadav 24 Right-handed Right-arm off-break All-rounder 0
Umesh Yadav 33 Right-handed Right-arm fast-medium Bowler 121
Ishant Sharma 32 Right-handed Right-arm fast-medium Bowler 90
Kagiso Rabada 25 Left-handed Right-arm fast-medium Bowler 35
Anrich Nortje 27 Right-handed Right-arm fast-medium Bowler 16
Tom Curran 26 Right-handed Right-arm fast-medium Bowler 10
Avesh Khan 24 Right-handed Right-arm fast-medium Bowler 9
Lukman Meriwala 29 Left-handed Left-arm fast-medium Bowler 0
Ravichandran Ashwin 34 Right-handed Right-arm off-break Bowler 154
Amit Mishra 38 Right-handed Right-arm leg-break Bowler 150
Axar Patel 27 Left-handed Left-arm spin Bowler 97
Praveen Dubey 27 Right-handed Right-arm leg-break Bowler 3
Manimaran Siddharth 22 Right-handed Left-arm spin Bowler 0

Note: The players in bold are overseas players

Shreyas Iyer had to withdraw because of a shoulder injury

Players bought at this year's IPL auction:

Steve Smith
Sam Billings
Vishnu Vinod
Ripal Patel
Umesh Yadav
Tom Curran
Lukman Meriwala
Manimaran Siddharth

Overall win-loss record in IPL:

PlayedWonLostNo ResultWin%W/L ratio
194 86 106 2 44.33 0.81

Note: The win/loss tally includes results in Super Over after a tie

Delhi Capitals have gone from strength to strength in the last few years -- finishing third in 2019 before finishing runners up last year to Mumbai Indians.

Best finish in IPL: Runner-up in 2020

How they fared in each edition:

YearPosition
2008 SF
2009 SF
2010 5th
2011 10th
2012 3rd
2013 9th
2014 8th
2015 7th
2016 6th
2017 6th
2018 8th
2019 3rd
2020 2nd

SF = Semi-finalist

In Shikhar Dhawan, Prithvi Shaw and Ajinkya Rahane, Delhi boast of a solid top order. Pant along with Marcus Stoinis and Shimron Hetmyer or Sam Billings will look to fill the hole left by Iyer in the middle order.

The addition of the hugely talented and experienced Australian Steve Smith will further bolster their batting.

Pant, who been enjoying a dream run with the bat in the last few months, will have to ensure that the added leadership responsibility doesn't affect his natural attacking instinct as a batsman.

Top batsmen:

 GamesRunsHighest scoreAverageStrike Rate10050
S S Iyer 79 2200 96 31.42 126.07 0 16
V Sehwag 79 2174 119 29.37 160.32 1 15
R R Pant 68 2079 128* 35.23 151.97 1 12
S Dhawan 47 1479 106* 38.92 133.72 2 13
D A Warner 55 1435 109* 28.70 133.11 2 10
G Gambhir 46 1182 86 29.55 122.86 0 9
K D Karthik 56 1036 69 25.26 126.49 0 6
J-P Duminy 38 1015 78* 44.13 130.79 0 6
P P Shaw 38 826 99 21.73 139.76 0 6
Q de Kock 23 720 108 32.72 134.83 1 5

On the bowling front, the South African pace duo of Kagiso Rabada (IPL 2020 Purple Cap winner) and Anrich Nortje has proved to a dream pair, having scalped 52 wickets together in 2020.

With Chris Woakes in the mix this time and Ishant Sharma and Umesh Yadav also in the ranks, Delhi have lot of quality options in their pace attack.

In the spin department, Delhi Capitals boast of a lot of experience in veterans Ravichandran Ashwin and Amit Mishra, while Axar Patel has also been in great form recently.

Top bowlers:

 GamesWicketsAverageRuns Per OverBest4W
A Mishra 95 100 23.98 7.33 5-17 2
K Rabada 35 61 18.09 8.23 4-21 4
M Morkel 37 45 24.73 7.62 4-20 1
U T Yadav 47 43 30.55 8.16 4-24 1
C H Morris 34 41 24.31 8.17 4-26 1
S Nadeem 61 40 37.00 7.36 3-16 0
A Nehra 27 36 21.05 7.50 3-26 0
I K Pathan 46 29 41.06 7.57 3-28 0
P Sangwan 28 29 28.72 8.19 3-18 0
Imran Tahir 20 29 21.48 8.61 4-28 1

Feature Presentation: Rajesh Alva/Rediff.com

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Indian Premier League - 2021

Indian Premier League - 2021