Steve Smith in contention as DC eye playoffs: With Marcus Stoinis injured, the Delhi Capitals were expected to give Steve Smith a game. Against the Rajasthan Royals on Saturday, but instead, the 2020 IPL finalists took the lead with just three foreign players. It could have turned out to be disastrous for DC and at one point. It seems, they published 154 in Abu Dhabi.
However, the DC bowlers did a remarkable job of keeping the opposition at 121/6, which left all the skeptics out. Still, DC might be tempted to abandon Indian three’s 8-foreign-player policy. And return to the norm with the former Australian captain taking on the Kolkata Knight Riders on Tuesday. The team they will face at Sharjah Cricket Stadium is inches from the playoffs.
Here is what the Delhi Capitals team may look like:
1. Shikhar Dhawan
Dhawan began the second phase of IPL 2021 with intent, scoring 42, but was out cheaply for 8 against RR. With the rich vein of form Dhawan is in, he would want to maintain the lead on KL Rahul in the leading run-scorer list of the season.
2. Prithvi Shaw
Young Prithvi Shaw has so much promise, but in order to make sure that his remaining outings do not prove to be a repeat of his show in the last season, the batsman needs to be a little more patient up top. DC will surely retain him but Shaw shouldn’t take these chances for granted.
3. Shreyas Iyer
The returning Shreyas Iyer hasn’t put a step wrong, with scores of 43 and 47 in the two matches, and the fit-again former Delhi Capitals skipper would be keen to prove a point before the T20 World Cup starts. He may be a stand-in player but could be the first player drafted into the main squad in case of any emergency.
4. Rishabh Pant (Capt/Wk)
Mature Pant has shown that he can stay till the end and finish games for his team. He has done so in back-to-back games. And this bodes as an encouraging sign for the Indian team for the T20 World Cup. Pant the dasher, or Pant the anchor? Well, the answer seems to be both.
5. Steve Smith
Time is ripe for DC to hand Steve Smith a game and bolster their batting further. If Marcus Stoinis is fit, then it would be tough for the former Australia skipper to get a game. But otherwise, he should be a no-brainer ahead of Lalit Yadav.
6. Shimron Hetmyer
The big-hitting Hetmyer may be pushed a little lower down in the batting order but with his big-hitting skills it doesn’t matter. Hetmyer got off to a start in the previous game scoring 28 off just 16 balls hitting five fours and he would like to take the same approach forward.
7. Axar Patel
DC’s batting runs deep with Axar Patel capable of hitting the big. He hit 12 off 7 including a six against RR and there’s no reason why he can’t do it again or build on it if his chance with the bat comes.
Finished with economical figures of 1/20 and looks to be warming up in style for the T20 World Cup. His battles against Shubman Gill, Rahul Tripathi, and Eoin Morgan, all of whom are good players of spin, will make for fascinating contests
9. Kagiso Rabada
Rabada is climbing up quickly in the Purple Cap list and looks in supreme form and fitness. Expect Rabada to pepper KKR’s top order with some real scorching deliveries up first.
10. Anrich Nortje
There is so much more to Anrich Nortje than just pace. There is control, there is proper planning, and then the right execution. With Rabada, he would not make life easy for KKR’s strong top order.
11. Avesh Khan
Avesh has bowled well in the two games that he has played upon resumption. With Rabada and Nortje, Avesh is the perfect third seamer for DC who would be eager to maintain his upward graph.
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