“This is a weak team” – Aakash Chopra on Delhi Capitals
By SMCS - Mar 21, 2022 2:10 pm
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Former India cricketer turned veteran commentator Aakash Chopra has named the probable Delhi Capitals XI for the first few matches of IPL 2022. The Capitals won’t get the services of a few of their overseas players in the beginning. While Anrich Nortje is likely to miss out due to injury, David Warner and Mitchell Marsh are on national duties as well.

delhi capitals
Kagiso Rabada and Marcus Stoinis bowled well for Delhi Capitals

In a video shared on his YouTube channel, Aakash Chopra said: “I see Tim Seifert opening with Prithvi Shaw. I will say play Kona Bharat at No. 3, you have the option of Yash Dhull and Mandeep Singh as well, but I will say Kona. Rishabh Pant at No. 4, Rovman Powell at No. 5, Sarfaraz at No. 6. This makes it your top six. This is a weak team.”

Chopra again explained: “You will field three keepers – Tim Siefert, Kona Bharat and Rishabh Pant – but what to do, you don’t have an option. No one bowls among the top six, so you can go with only five bowlers in the first three matches. You cannot play a sixth bowler at all, this is the sad reality for the Delhi Capitals in the first three games. It is only going to change once Mitchell Marsh comes. Your batting is also weak for the first three matches, forget about the bowling’s balance.”

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Rovman Powell can perform the sixth bowler’s role for the Delhi Capitals if required. The big-hitting Jamaican has rolled his arm over for the West Indies in international cricket on a few occasions. While choosing Axar Patel and Shardul Thakur as his two bowling all-rounders, Aakash Chopra stated that Thakur might be short of match practice as well. He also added that Kuldeep Yadav, Lungi Ngidi and Mustafizur Rahman will play important roles.

He elaborated: “After that, you will see Axar and Shardul at No. 7 and No. 8. Both are all-rounders, Shardul four overs – remains to be seen, he hasn’t played cricket for a long time, he took a break for the entire Sri Lanka series. After that, you will play Kuldeep Yadav. If you don’t play Kuldeep, you will play Pravin Dubey or Lalit Yadav but they are not your wicket-taking options. You used to have a lot of wicket-taking options. Your bowling was outstanding which is no longer the case. You can play both Fizz (Mustafizur) and Ngidi to make it four overseas. You can also play one out of Khaleel or Sakariya.”

delhi capitals
R Ashwin bowled a brilliant over by taking two wickets

Aakash Chopra has also said that the Delhi Capitals will face challenges to field four quality overseas players in the first few games as well. He shared: “Surprise surprise, you have only seven overseas players. When you could have taken eight, why didn’t you? I didn’t understand this stinginess at all because you already had seven and if Nortje doesn’t come, it becomes six. Two or three of the six are not available, so what will you do for the first match? You don’t have players at all, you are down to absolutely nothing.”

He further added: “You had retained four players, which also included Anrich Nortje. When you retained him, the talk was already going on about his hip surgery. He has not played cricket at all after that. That is the gamble that you took. You let Kagiso Rabada go; you thought you will get someone else, and Anrich Nortje will come. But Anrich Nortje in all likelihood is not going to come. He is not available as of now, has not played anything for South Africa for the last six months. So what will happen to Anrich Nortje; it’s a big question.”

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The veteran has also applauded the acquisition of Rovman Powell, and he also opened up on Marsh’s bowling fitness which is always a question mark. “Forget you and me, even Ricky Ponting doesn’t know properly about Mitchell Marsh’s bowling; he leaves after getting injured. You did a good job by picking Rovman Powell, as Shimron Hetmyer left,” Aakash Chopra concluded.

Aakash Chopra’s Delhi Capitals playing XI for the first few matches of IPL 2022: Prithvi Shaw, Tim Seifert, KS Bharat, Rishabh Pant, Rovman Powell, Sarfaraz Khan, Axar Patel, Shardul Thakur, Kuldeep Yadav, Lungi Ngidi, Mustafizur Rahman