Delhi Daredevils is now Delhi Capitals. With a new joint owner in JSW Sports Private Limited, it is hoping the name and a spanking new management would also change its fortunes. It has never won the title and, in last few seasons, has not even looked like a title contender.
The core group now is driven by young Indian players, led by skipper Shreyas Iyer and boasting of the likes of Prithvi Shaw and Rishabh Pant. The top order is further bolstered by the return of local boy and Indian opener Shikhar Dhawan. With its top four sorted out, the team believes it is in a good position going into the IPL auction to be held on December 18 in Jaipur.
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JSW Sports had acquired a 50 per cent stake in the team. Last season, GMR Group, the sole owners, went into the joint venture and this season JSW has come to the forefront of the management of team affairs.
Delhi Capitals is clearly looking to start afresh with coach Ricky Ponting and are looking to learn from the bitter lessons of the past. “We have looked at all our learnings from past seasons and found that we need a good foundation and keep our core group of players intact. Hopefully, we will also get a bit of luck this time,” said Kiran Kumar Grandhi, corporate chairman, GMR Group.
Parth Jindal, director, JSW Sports, exuded confidence, when asked how the team was gearing up for the IPL auction, considering there was a buzz that the IPL next year would be held outside India partly because of the Lok Sabha elections. “Where it is held is out of our control. Our projections are based more on player availability. We know England and Australian players won't be available post May 1. All teams will have similar issues so all will go into the auction on an even playing field.” The team is looking more on having Indian and Caribbean players in the side.
On the issue of the Indian team management keen on IPL franchises resting Indian pace bowlers in a bid to manage their workload ahead of the ICC Cricket World Cup in June 2019, Jindal said, “Luckily we don’t have main Indian bowlers in our midst.”