Dubai: Delhi Capitals are the only team among the eight franchises to have never appeared in an IPL final, but it could all change this year. If last season saw a huge improvement when they made it to the play-offs for the first time in seven years, they have been prolific buyers in the last auction - making their intent clear.
One of the main things the team management did before the last auction is to release some players like Hanuma Vihari, Jalaj Saxena, Manjot Kalra, Ankush Bains, Nathu Singh, Bandaru Ayappa, Chris Morris, Colin Ingram and Colin Munro from their roster, making sizeable additions in Jason Roy, Alex Carey, Shimron Hetmyer, Mohit Sharma, Tushar Deshpande, Marcus Stoinis and Lalit Yadav.
- IPL in UAE: Kohli and co are friends reunited in Dubai for Royal Challengers Bangalore
- IPL in UAE: Sunrisers Hyderabad and Delhi Capitals get up to speed
- Goodbye, commander: Italian artist TVBOY pays tribute to Messi's career in Barcelona
- IPL in UAE: No pain, no gain for KXIP, RCB, Mumbai and Rajasthan
Anrich Nortje, the lanky South African, was a late entrant in place of the unavailable Chris Woakes while Ryan Harris became the latest to join the technical staff as bowling coach replacing James Hope.
This year with the changes made, the Capitals look a well-balanced side. In batting, Rishabh Pant is a brilliant striker with a high strike rate and can provide support to the team in finishing off matches. Veteran Shikhar Dhawan has always been a threat in upping the tempo of an innings for any team.
In the bowling department, South African Kagiso Rabada comes in as the current Purple Cap holder and will be eager to wreck down the opposition in the company of compatriot Nortje and Ishant Sharma. Ravichandran Ashwin – who was weaned away from Kings XI Punjab - will be an asset on slow UAE wickets alongwith Amit Sharma, one of the highest wicket-takers in IPL history.
Perhaps, Mohammad Kaif – who is assistant to head coach Ricky Ponting – struck the best note. Kaif was particularly confident about the balance of the Delhi Capitals squad this season. He believes that DC ticked all the boxes during this year’s auctions and with Nortje coming to the side, it looks even deadlier now.
“Our team has improved very well from last season. We have a complete squad and picked some experienced players Ashwin, Rahane, Alex Carey and Hetmyer as well. We already had matchwinners like Shaw, Pant and Iyer. Now, we have Anrich Nortje as well, and this makes a good combination with Rabada and Ishant already in the side,” Kaif said.
“The new players make this side very balanced this year We played well last year also, and that confidence will help the players this season,” he added.
Main man: Shikhar Dhawan
Coach: Ricky Ponting
Captain: Shreyas Iyer
Owners: GMR Group, JSW Group
Indian Premier League wins: None
Champions League T20 wins: None
Squad for IPL 2020
Shreyas Iyer; Prithvi Shaw; Shikhar Dhawan; Ajinkya Rahane; Shimron Hetmyer; Jason Roy; Marcus Stoinis; Lalit Yadav; Rishabh Pant; Alex Carey; Amit Mishra; Sandeep Lamichhane; Axar Patel; Ravichandran Ashwin; Kagiso Rabada; Avesh Khan; Harshal Patel; Ishant Sharma; Keemo Paul; Mohit Sharma; Tushar Deshpande; Anrich Nortje.