After a few years of reaching the playoffs, Delhi Capitals have once again lost their way in the IPL. Finalists in 2020, the Capitals have lost all five of their matches in IPL 2023. In the absence of Rishabh Pant, stand-in captain David Warner has not been able to get his team together and despite individual brilliances, the Capitals have struggled to come together as a unit and as a result, find themselves in the middle of this losing streak.
With loss to Lucknow Super Giants, Gujarat Titans, Rajasthan Royals, Mumbai Indians and Royal Challengers Bangalore, the Capitals find themselves languishing at the bottom of the points table, yet to get off the mark.
The problem with DC is the fact that none of their matches have even run close. They have lost by huge margins, which in turn has resulted in their NRR plummeting to -1.4. DC may still be alive as far as their chances of qualifying for the Playoffs are concerned, but in order for that to happen, things need to changed drastically and quickly. Former India opener Virender Sehwag zeroed in on DC’s performance this year and felt that coach Ricky Ponting is to be blamed for such a catastrophic season. However, the same Ponting, a three-time World Cup winner, appeared positive when he tried to lift the morale of the team after their 23-run defeat to RCB.
“Good, really good bowling performance. They challenged us early; they got off to a flier. Our attitude and commitment came back, we dragged it back. Kuldeep, where are you mate? Disappointed last game, weren’t you? You actually said sorry to me at the end of the game. So mate, don’t you ever say sorry to me or anyone for what happens on the cricket field. What I want you to do is bounce back strong and today with 2/23 off four, it was an outstanding spell of bowling. Well done,” Ponting said with DC’s Director of Cricket Sourav Ganguly in attendance.
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Kuldeep has picked four wickets from five games this season. Against Mumbai Indians at the Arun Jaitley Stadium, he was walloped for 23 runs in two overs going at 11.5. Against RCB, he again went for 23, but this time those runs came off four overs, while Kuldeep also picked up the wickets of the dangerous Glenn Maxwell for 24 and Dinesh Karthik for a first-ball duck. Ponting also appreciated the efforts of Lalit Yadav, who kept things tight with the ball and finished with 1/29, and reserved top praises for all-rounders Axar Patel and Mitchell Marsh.
“Lalit, I thought you did a good job with the ball as well buddy. Two sixes in that one over otherwise the reason we bought you in today was to bowl those hard overs in the Powerplay, just outside it, and you did a great job as well. Axar you were also great. 1/25 off three and our golden boy Mitchell Marsh, who picks up 2/18 of his couple overs as well. So well done,” added Ponting.
Finally, Ponting wanted players to improve on their fielding. The ground fielding was a touch off and Manish Pandey even spilled a not-so-toughie at point. Five defeats in a row can hurt and sting, but Ponting urged the boys to keep their chin up and follow the following practices to turn the fortunes of the team.
“Fielding was good. But it was good without being great. Whenever we take the field next time, I want to take the fielding from being good to great. I want you to go about your own preparations, look at your own vision, work on your own game plan and play it your way. One thing I said about the game, I know you keep on working hard. Keep doing all the right things, then eventually it’s going to change. That’s the only way we will be able to go forward boys – simple, altogether, as a group, work hard together for each other to turn things around,” the legendary former Australia captain pointed out.