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If the IPL 2020 were a virtual game where one could judge the entire tournament with their teams on paper strength, only perennial contenders Mumbai Indians and Chennai Super Kings would come close to overhauling the Delhi Capitals (DC) in terms of quality. The franchise, after years of disappointments, seem have done their homework and have assembled a squad which puts them in pole position to end their IPL title drought. So will Delhi capitalise on their opportunity this season? Here's a look at the DC team schedule, DC squad, DC past records and the what potentially could and couldn't work in their favour ahead of the IPL 2020.
The fact that Delhi Capitals can assemble an entire playing XI without using any of their foreign players is in itself a statement on how well they utilised the action and the trade window. The DC team made it to the playoffs last season, where their inexperience cost them, which is why the franchise swiftly moved to acquire experience Indian internationals in Ajinkya Rahane and Ravichandran Ashwin. Furthermore, the DC squad is well compiled with ankle backups in each department. The IPL relocation to UAE bodes well for the DC players, with the DC squad boasting of potentially the best spin attack in the tournament.
Counting down the days until we start our season on Sunday. The boys have been outstanding with their training and preparation and competition for spots in the starting eleven is certainly hot. Exactly what you want as a coach. @delhicapitals pic.twitter.com/4PHBDTAA3p— Ricky Ponting AO (@RickyPonting) September 16, 2020
The DC team's strong Indian core gives them the option to tinker with their overseas buys according to the conditions, making them a daunting opposition to face. While Shreyas Iyer will lead the DC team in the upcoming IPL, the squad boasts of experienced internationals in Shikhar Dhawan, Ajinkya Rahane and R Ashwin, who have prior captaincy experience in the competition. Ricky Ponting's addition in the backroom staff will also play a vital role during the DC team schedule.
While the Capitals have covered most bases in their squad, they still are very thing when considering their Indian fast bowling resources. Ishant Sharma is their first choice Indian pacer, with Harshal Patel and Avesh Khan as his backups. The Capitals also have variety in their pace attack, with Daniel Sams being their only left-handed pacer and is likely to be on the fringes of the first XI. Among other issues, the lack of a bowling option in their top five will hurt their team combinations this season.
With Rahane, Dhawan and Prithvi Shaw likely to contend for the opening slots, Marcus Stoinis is expected to bat at 6 for the franchise. While the Australian all-rounder has been in sublime form in recent times, his record as a finisher is dreadful, to say the least, which saw him being traded by Kings XI Punjab and released by the Royal Challengers Bangalore. In Rahane, Dhawan and Shaw, DC have three quality openers, meaning that one of the three will have to compromise on their natural style of play and adjust to the team's requirement.
Ajinkya Rahane was ousted as Rajasthan Raoyls captain last season before being traded, meaning that the Mumbai batsman will have a point to prove this IPL. Ravichandran Ashwin and Shimron Hetmyer are among other DC players who will also have the same fire in their bellies having being releases by KXIP and RCB respectively and will look to make the most of their opportunities this season. While the DC squad boasts of many Indian players, most of them have been on the fringes of the team and will look to ake their opportunities count as they look to force their way into national reckoning. The tournament provides Shreyas Iyer to prove his mettle as a captain and a player, while it gives Rishabh Pant another shot at showcasing his abilities.
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