Delhi Capitals are in a tricky position now. After three defeats on the trot against Kings XI Punjab, Kolkata Knight Riders and Sunrisers Hyderabad, DC are placed third with 14 points from games, courtesy of their consistent run in the first half of the league.
They will now go into Saturday’s game against Mumbai Indians at the Dubai International Cricket Stadium. MI, although without their captain Rohit Sharma, have come together as a force to reckon with. The defending champions are the first team to qualify for the playoffs, courtesy of the team performance.
DC, on the other hand, continue to struggle in the batting department. Barring Shikhar Dhawan, the likes of skipper Shreyas Iyer, Shimron Hetmeyer and Marcus Stoinis have failed to make an impact.
To add to their woes is out-of-form Ajinkya Rahane who replaced struggling Prithvi Shaw. DC can ill afford to take things lightly and need at least a win to seal their playoff place. This brings up the question — Should they bring back Prithvi Shaw and play with the same playing XI which helped them stay in the top of the IPL points table in the first half of the league?
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IPL 2020: DC without Prithvi Shaw
Delhi Capitals decided to bench Shaw against CSK after a string a bad performances from the youngster. Unlike the first half, where the 20-year-old scored 179 runs with two fifties, he managed to get just amass just 30 runs in the second half.
To solve it, the team management decided to bring in Rahane, which made things even worse. In three matches played, he has scored 34 runs out of which 26 were scored against SRH in the previous game.
The Delhi-based franchise have lost all the three games without Shaw. They can now do a KKR and get Shaw back in the playing XI, hoping he does a Sunil Narine and end the team’s losing streak. The KKR all-rounder missed a couple of games due to suspension. He made his comeback against DC and scored a blistering 64 off 32 balls.
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If Shaw can do something similar for DC they will become the second team to confirm their place in the playoffs. However, if they lose, things can get difficult for them in the final game.
What Delhi Capitals need to do to qualify for the IPL 2020 playoff?
Played 12, Points 14, NRR 0.030
Remaining matches: vs Mumbai, Royal Challengers
Like RCB, DC too need a win to seal their playoff place, but their last two games are against the top two teams on the table.
Capitals can ill-afford another meltdown like the one they had against Sunrisers: if they lose their last two, it is entirely possible that Kings XI will go past them on NRR even if they finish on 14 points. In that scenario, Capitals could find themselves eliminated if other teams on 14 finish on a higher NRR.