Former Australian cricketer and the current head coach of Delhi Capitals, Ricky Ponting, has expressed his desire to see all-rounder Axar Patel play a bigger role in the upcoming season of the Indian Premier League (IPL). Axar was tremendous with the bat in the recently-concluded Test series against Australia. He scored 264 runs in four matches at an average of 88 and finished as India's second-highest run-getter.
I want to get a bit more out of him at the Delhi Capitals this year, that's for sure. A few times last year we sort of batted him up a little bit higher. I think he's good enough to bat No.6 probably in an IPL team."
Axar Patel is a left-handed batsman and a left-arm orthodox spinner who has been a part of the Delhi Capitals since 2019. The 27-year-old played a crucial role in the team's run to the final in the 2020 season, picking up nine wickets in 15 matches at an economy rate of 6.54. However, Axar's batting skills were not utilized completely as he batted lower down the order in most of the matches. Ponting believes that the all-rounder has the potential to make a bigger impact with the bat, especially if he is promoted up the order.
The Delhi Capitals have a strong batting lineup, with the likes of David Warner, Prithvi Shaw, and Mitchell Marsh in the top order. However, Ponting feels that Axar's inclusion in the middle order could give the team an added dimension and make them even more formidable.
The Delhi Capitals will begin their IPL 2023 campaign on April 1, when they take on the Lucknow Super Giants at the Atal Vihari Bajpayee Stadium in Lucknow. With Ponting's backing and his own determination, Axar Patel will be hoping to make a big impact this season and help his team go all the way. In the absence of Rishabh Pant, Axar Patel is expected to play a big role in the 16th edition of the Indian Premier League (IPL).
Delhi Capitals' squad: Rishabh Pant, Prithvi Shaw, Axar Patel, Aman Khan, Chetan Sakariya, Kamlesh Nagarkoti, Kuldeep Yadav, Lalit Yadav, Pravin Dubey, Prithvi Shaw, Ripal Patel, Sarfaraz Khan, Syed Khaleel Ahmed, Vicky Ostwal, Yash Dhull, Anrich Nortje, David Warner, Lungisani Ngidi, Mitchell Marsh, Mustafizur Rahman, Rovman Powell, Phil Salt, Ishant Sharma, Manish Pandey, Mukesh Kumar, Rilee Rossouw.