IPL 10: SWOT Analysis of Delhi Daredevils

IPL 10: SWOT Analysis of Delhi Daredevils

Delhi Daredevils have failed to put their combinations right at the crunch times in the history of the tournament.

Delhi Daredevils IPL
Delhi Daredevils. (Photo Source: BCCI)

The Delhi Daredevils have always been a fancied side in the Indian Premier League over the last decade. They have looked very strong on paper and have been the early bloomers in the tournament. They often kick start their campaign on winning note but their form seems to dwindle as the tournament progresses. They hold the unique distinction of finishing on the top of the points table twice and still not making it to the finals.

They were the semi-finalists in the 2008 and the 2009 edition. The year of 2011 remains to be their worst outing till date as they finished at the bottom of the points table. Then came the 2012 edition, where the team looked in supreme form with the likes of Kevin Pietersen and Virender Sehwag reigning supreme. They made it to the playoffs but choked yet again.

Since then, they have failed to be in the top four and that remains a worrying concern for the franchise owners and the team players as well. They finished at the 6th position in the points table last year. With the 2017 edition, the management will hope for an improved showing. They have the services of legendary cricketer Rahul Dravid as their team mentor and that should bring a lot of calmness to the unit.

Strengths

The Delhi Daredevils camp have ensured that they putforth a very impressive bowling line up this year. They have worked very smartly to beef up their bowling department. They have Zaheer Khan at the helm. The South African duo of Chris Morris and Kagiso Rabada looks like a very threatening prospect on paper – something that all teams would be wary of.

While the heroics of Morris with both bat and the ball is known to all, this will be Rabada’s first outing in the IPL. They have Pat Cummins in the line up too. Cummins had been an impressive performer during the recently concluded Test series against India. In addition to these, they have veteran Indian spinners Shahbaz Nadeem and Amit Mishra in their ranks. Add India’s premier pacer Mohammad Shami to it and bowling looks fantastic.

Another quotient where the Delhi camp looks very stable is with their all-rounders. The T20 format is such that it often demands the players to be impressive in both departments. Yet again, Chris Morris could well serve the role of the pinch hitter in the line up. West Indies hard hitting batsman Carlos Brathwaite is a proven match winner on his day. Along with Brathwaite, the Delhi Daredevils have managed to sign in the Kiwi all-rounder Corey Anderson as well.

The young Indian batting brigade is another strength that the Delhi team boasts of. It has been the case over the years that the team with which Rahul Dravid has been associated has ended up unearthing local young talents. With Saanju Samson, Aditya Tare, Shreyas Iyer, Rishabh Pant and Sam Billings in the batting department, they have very little to worry about.

There is a plethora of domestic input in the line up as well. Navdeep Saini has been a consistent performer in the domestic circuit. Maharashtra’s Ankit Bawne recently hit the straps right by getting amongst the runs in the domestic season this year. Young Indian leggie Murugan Ashwin will be well supported by Jayant Yadav, who has had a fair share of international experience at his disposal recently. When it comes to Indian players, the Delhi camp has a problem of excess. This is certainly a positive sign for the team management.

Weakness

While the fact that the team boasts of a lot of youngsters can actually be an exciting prospect, it comes as a double edged sword too. There is clear lack of experience in the batting order with Aditya Tare and Karun Nair being the most experienced batsmen among the whole lot. Yes, they do have Angelo Mathews in the line up but his availability remains largely unknown and he is most likely to miss out on the tournament.

Batsmen like Rishabh Pant and Sam Billings are proven hitters of the cricket ball. But their credibility with the bat in crunch pressure situations remains untested. The Delhi team can only hope that they do not take too long to test themselves in this aspect. The middle order is bleak with Carlos Brathwaite, Corey Anderson and Aditya Tare being short on batting averages.

All in all, it is the batting department – be it the top order or the middle order – that might let them down in the tournament this year. The only way they can sort this out is when some youngster steps to the occasion and rises above the reputations.

Opportunities

Among the younger lot, Rishabh Pant has a massive opportunity to make a very bold statement. His recent run of form has been excellent. If he manages to translate the good form in the IPL as well, it will not only benefit the Delhi Daredevils outfit but the Indian camp too. The young hard hitting batsman took the Ranji Trophy season by a storm by scoring a triple century, scoring the fastest Ranji Trophy century and then backing it up with two more tons.

South African speedster Kagiso Rabada has been one of the most talented finds of international cricket this decade. The young gun can clock some serious pace and that puts him in line to be a top performer this season. He has the ability to be among the wickets and will be a serious contender for the purple cap.

Shahbaz Nadeem has been among the top wicket takers in the domestic seasons over the last couple of years. He can further strengthen his claim as one of the finest left armers of the country if he manages to replicate his heroics in the IPL too. Nadeem has the ability to bowl well with the new ball too and one can expect him to bowl early on in the powerplays as well.

Threats

The biggest threat that the team is facing is with the injuries. They have already lost the services of JP Duminy who opted out of the tournament due to personal reasons. Wicket keeper batsman Quinton de Kock had to bow out due to an injury as well. Angelo Mathews is having a dark cloud over his participation in the league. Young Indian batsman Shreyas Iyer has been ruled out of the first few fixtures due to chicken pox.

The other threat that looms over the Delhi Daredevils is in regard to keep their players match fit. They have a lot of domestic players on board. They will be worried with the fact that the players might end up warming the bench for too long and get rusty when the opportunity beckons for them in an emergency or a crucial encounter. They will have to incorporate a strong rotation policy at hand.