Delhi Capitals (DC), being placed in the top-half of the points table, have looked absolutely brilliant in the 2020 edition of the Indian Premier League (IPL). The team, led by Shreyas Iyer, have won five out of their first seven games and are placed second.
But it’s also pertinent to note that they are coming off a five-wicket defeat against Rohit Sharma’s Mumbai Indians (MI) at the Sheikh Zayed Stadium. DC are next set to lock horns with the Rajasthan Royals (RR) on Wednesday, October 14 at the Dubai International Cricket Stadium.
Last time around when the two teams met, it was DC who came out trumps by 46 runs. But this time, Steve Smith’s Royals must be high on confidence after beating the Sunrisers Hyderabad (SRH) by five wickets. For DC, it remains to be seen if they make any changes.
Here is the Predicted Playing XI for the Delhi Capitals for DC vs RR game:
Openers (Shikhar Dhawan, Prithvi Shaw)
In the opening combo, Shikhar Dhawan has 210 runs at an average of 33.50. But it’s his strike-rate of 125.62 that needs an escalation. In the last game, he played for the entire duration of the 20 overs, but could only manage 69 runs.
He wasn’t able to press the accelerator when DC needed some quick runs. The southpaw has to find ways of changing gears and up the scoring rate as and when needed. His partner, Prithvi Shaw, has 202 runs at an average of 28.85 with a couple of fifties.
He has numbers similar to Dhawan, but it’s his strike-rate of 150.74 that has made the most difference for the Capitals. The team has gotten off to flying starts courtesy Shaw’s brilliance at the top of the order. Along with Shaw if Dhawan also ups his scoring rate, it could create headaches for opponents.
Middle-order (Shreyas Iyer (C), Alex Carey (wk), Ajinkya Rahane)
Shreyas Iyer scored an unbeaten 88 against Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) at a strike-rate well above 200. However, barring the knock in Sharjah, the Capitals’ skipper hasn’t been at his best. Nevertheless, Iyer is still the leading run-scorer for his team with 245 runs at an average and strike-rate of 40.83 and 138.41 respectively.
The Royals’ bowling isn’t in the best of rhythms and Shreyas can cash in. In their previous game, DC made a couple of changes to their middle-order. Dropping Shimron Hetmyer and Rishabh Pant, they went for Ajinkya Rahane and Alex Carey respectively.
Carey didn’t get much of a chance as he scored 14 off nine balls and took a catch with the keeping gloves. However, Rahane will look for a better performance after managing only a run-a-ball 15 in the previous match.
All-rounders (Marcus Stoinis, Harshal Patel, Axar Patel)
It goes without saying that Marcus Stoinis has been the one the Capitals have looked up to amongst the all-rounders. He has not only played some blinders with the bat, but also made some crucial breakthroughs.
The Melbourne Stars’ cricketer has 175 runs at a strike-rate of 175 to go with six wickets. Needless to say, that the Capitals will again be pinning hopes on the 31-year-old to deliver. Axar Patel has been one of the under-rated stars for the Capitals in the tournament. In six games, the left-arm spinner has as many wickets.
But most importantly, he has bowled at an economy of 5.05- the best among the DC bowlers. Moreover, he has bowled well, both in the powerplay and in the middle-overs. Harshal Patel has three wickets in his kitty and will need to be more consistent.
Bowlers (Ravichandran Ashwin, Kagiso Rabada, Anrich Nortje)
In the bowling department, Kagiso Rabada has arguably been the star performer for the Capitals in the first seven matches. Having picked 17 wickets at an impressive average and strike-rate of 12.52 and 9.7 respectively, the South African paceman has been hard to get away.
He has bowled at an economy of 7.69. Moreover, the youngster is, well and truly, in the race for getting the Purple Cap. Ravi Ashwin has bowled well after he returned from his shoulder injury that he sustained during the game against Kings XI Punjab (KXIP) on September 20.
The tweaker has six wickets from five games at an economy of 7.40. He also has a ‘Player of the Match’ award to show for his efforts. Pacer Anrich Nortje hasn’t flattered to deceive either, picking eight wickets at a decent economy rate of 7.21.