We are just a month away from the 13th edition of the Indian Premier League and honestly, one can't wait for one of the biggest sporting festivals in the world to begin. Before we get there though, there's so much to talk about and here, we are going to take a look at how Delhi Capitals (DC) might fare this year with regards to their bowling department.
Under the leadership of Shreyas Iyer and Ricky Ponting, DC managed to reach Qualifier 2 last year and this year, they will most definitely be aiming to go all the way in the tournament. The Delhi franchise made some big signings in the IPL 2020 auctions, namely Shimron Hetmyer, Marcus Stoinis, Chris Woakes, and Jason Roy, along with Ravichandran Ashwin and Ajinkya Rahane - the latter two were signed in the IPL trade window.
Over the years, Feroz Shah Kotla has been known for producing very dry and dusty wickets that usually turn a long way, so DC might lineup with at least three spinners but who will be spearheading their fast bowling department? Here we suggest the ideal bowling combination for DC this year.
#3 All-rounders | Chris Woakes, Ravichandran Ashwin, Axar Patel
The all-rounders department in the Delhi Capitals camp will see many new faces this year and among them would be Chris Woakes and Ravichandran Ashwin, who should be the first ones to be named in the DC starting XI.
Woakes because of his ability to bowl with the new ball and at the death. Ashwin, in particular, is very experienced at the IPL level and his leadership skills will be an added benefit for DC, along with his brilliant bowling skills. Furthermore, Woakes can prove to be a handy partner for someone like Kagiso Rabada as the Englishman offers something different to the South African, that is - swing and Test-like line & length. Both of them are also good batsmen, who add depth - but not necessarily firepower to DC's batting contingent.
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Then, Axar Patel, who played a lot of games for DC last year, can add his disciplined off-spinners to the bowling department, to go along with his ability to bat higher up the order and sometimes, even do the job of a pinch-hitter.
#2 Frontline spinner | Sandeep Lamichhane
The Nepali young sensation Sandeep Lamichhane didn't get many games for Delhi Capitals last year but in the 6 games he played, the 19-year-old picked up 8 wickets, which tells you that he is a wicket-taker.
This year, Lamichhane will return to the Delhi franchise with more experience and he should be picked ahead of any other leg-spinner in the DC ranks, especially at Feroz Shah Kotla.
It was quite surprising to see him not get much game time in IPL 2019 as he was DC's X-factor and the only mystery spinner in their squad.
#1 Frontline seamers | Kagiso Rabada and Ishant Sharma
Delhi Capitals' pace battery might very well be the same as last year. Ishant Sharma and Kagiso Rabada were excellent for DC as they complemented each other and they were one of the biggest reasons why the Delhi franchise was successful in 2019.
While Ishant bowled great spells with the new ball, Rabada took it upon himself to be the game-changer at the death, which worked effectively for Shreyas Iyer. But this year, with the addition of Chris Woakes, Sharma will have someone other than Rabada to bowl with - during the powerplay, which will also allow Iyer to keep as many overs of Rabada as possible for the death overs. There's a lot to choose from for the DC team management and it'll be interesting to see what combination they eventually go with.
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