Any number of interactions are less with this legendary cricketer, the Nawab of Najafgarh, Virendra Sehwag. This time I had an opportunity to discuss the ongoing IPL season 15 with him when he visited us at Danube Properties yesterday.
Sharing his views on the ongoing tournament, he noticed that the teams winning the toss are winning the games as well, because probably they’re opting to bowl first. He feels that the teams do need to break that thought and strategize how they can win by opting to bat first. We saw Punjab, KKR and DC chasing around 150-200 runs.
He adds that IPL is a huge platform for youngsters to show their talent as we have seen a lot of U-19 players perform well. This includes the likes Ayush Badoni(LSG), Lalit Yadav (DC) and Abhinav Manohar (GT). The tournament is exciting but the only issue he feels is that the players are scattered amongst 10 teams unlike the previous seasons, making the teams slightly weak on the bowling side.
This gave me a cue for the next question about which is his favorite team from the new 10 teams and why does he support them. He believes there are 2 dark horses this year, 1st is Punjab Kings and 2nd is Rajasthan Royals, who have a very good batting line up and a decent bowling side and can upset the opposition teams. He, however maintains that his favorite will always be Delhi, because he is from Delhi and of course he believes that Rishab Pant is leading the team in a good manner. He adds that if the team decides on the right squad for the playing 11, they stand a chance to grab the cup.
Answering very honestly to my question of which team does he want to win this season, he said, he will be happy with any other team except MI and CSK, since they already have won several times and he wants a new champion this year.
We have had 7 matches and all of them have gone to the wire and it is so difficult to predict the winner and as rightly mentioned by Viru, the team chasing is the one that’s winning the game, except for the one where RR managed to beat SRH despite batting first.
Going forward I am sure the wickets are going to be tired since the all matches will be played in 4 grounds only. So I asked Sehwag if he feels that the batting team will have a say and he believes that the heat will dictate the terms since it will be summer. As the temperatures will soar, the pitches will become rough faster and the teams will have to strategize their bowling by giving more opportunities to spinners. He believes that the groundsmen will do their job well to ensure the players get a good batting track.
Talking about Virat Kohli, being replaced as the captain, Sehwag said, “India never replaced Kohli because he himself stepped down as T20 captain. T20 and ODI both falling under the white ball format, the board wanted to have one captain for the format. As for Test cricket, he stepped down to concentrate on his batting. So it was Kohli’s decision to step down from captaincy to focus on the game. I always love watching him play.”
Being a true Delhi supporter, Sehwag believes that DC would take the cup this season. Let’s wait and watch!