IPL 2021: India’s frontline spinner, turned all-rounder in Test cricket, Ravichandran Ashwin joined Delhi Capitals camp on Sunday in Mumbai ahead of IPL 2021 campaign. Ashwin, who could very well be given the captaincy after Shreyas Iyer was ruled out due to shoulder injury, will be DC’s weapon with the bat and ball both as they look to win their maiden IPL title after losing the IPL 2020 final to Mumbai Indians.
Ravichandran Ashwin, coming off a fantastic Test series against England where he scalped 32 wickets in four matches, will be eager to put up good performances to keep him in consideration for T20 World Cup with India’s both white-ball specialist spinners struggling with form. Welcoming Ashwin, Delhi Capitals tweeted, “Welcome back to the DC camp, Ash anna.”
— Delhi Capitals (@DelhiCapitals) March 28, 2021
In the last edition of the IPL, Ashwin had a decent campaign, scalping 13 wickets in 15 matches. More importantly, he gave away runs at a modest economy rate of 7.66. But he failed to shine with the bat. After scoring 189 runs from six innings including a century in Chennai, Ashwin would be eager to emulate his scoring form in the IPL 2021. It will give DC the batting depth they need.
Like in the Tests against England, he will have Axar Patel as his deputy in the spin department at DC. And as the IPL is back in India, the duo will look to take advantage of the condition and chase the Purple Cap.
Who will be the Delhi Capitals’ captain in absence of Shreyas Iyer?
However, as for DC, they will have to make an immediate decision on who will be their captain for the upcoming season as Shreyas Iyer has been ruled out of IPL 2021 with a shoulder injury. Iyer will undergo surgery and the recovery will take 3-4 months.
IPL 2021: DC’s potential captains:
R Ashwin: The senior Indian spinner had led KingsXI Punjab for two seasons in 2018, 2019. Overall Ashwin has captaincy experience of 28 Matches, won 12 and lost 16. His record with KXIP was not too encouraging. Though considered as one of the best readers of the game, unlikely that DC will take a step back to handover captaincy to a player who failed as captain with some other franchise.
Steven Smith – 43 Matches, Won 25, Lost 17: Smith has the huge experience to lead IPL franchises but the thing which goes against him is – that his place in the line-up is not very certain. He also failed to live up to expectations as captain of Rajasthan Royals in IPL 2020 – no chance that DC management will give the captaincy to Smith.
Ajinkya Rahane: Super successful as captain of the Indian Test team in Australia. But he had a disaster of captaincy stint for Rajasthan Royals. It is unlikely that DC will go with Rahane as captain. His captaincy record reads – 25 Matches – Won 9 and lost 16.
Rishabh Pant: In comparison, Rishabh Pant has never led an IPL franchise but his exuberance, current form and most importantly his aggressive mindset works in his favour. Moreover, DC has groomed him as a future leader for the last 2 years by appointing him as vice-captain in 2019, 2020. All of these points that Delhi Capitals is unlikely to look beyond Pant for captaincy role.