IPL: From apparel colour to franchise name, DD set to make big changes

IPL: From apparel colour to franchise name, DD set to make big changes

Earlier this year, the Delhi franchise went through a tumultuous time when their former skipper Gautam Gambhir chose to step down from the post.

Delhi Daredevils
Delhi Daredevils. (Photo by Surjeet Yadav/IANS)

The 2019 Indian Premier League (IPL) may still be far off on the calendar but the tournament isn’t without its share of developments throughout the year. Recently, it’s the Delhi Daredevils (DD) franchise that seems to be looking at big upheaval in terms of its outlook and presentation in the league.

Earlier this year, the Delhi franchise went through a tumultuous time when their former skipper Gautam Gambhir chose to step down from the post owing to a poor form with the bat and had to be replaced by young Mumbai cricketer Shreyas Iyer. However, that did not bring about much of a change in DD’s fortune as they finished last on the points table at the end of the tournament.

DD to undergo a major makeover

As reported by the Times of India (TOI), the balance in the DD team management is not as hunky dory as it seems. The 50:50 partnership GMR Group — the owners of Delhi Daredevils, and JSW Sports — the owners of the football club and franchise Bengaluru FC seems to be hanging by a thread. Rumour has it that Parth Jindal, Director at JSW Sports, has been calling all the shots where major decisions with regards to the Delhi franchise are concerned.

Currently, major changes in the team outfit seem to be heading DD’s way. From handing former Australia captain Ricky Ponting absolute control of the franchise, appointing offspinner Harbhajan Singh as the mentor, effecting a change in the colour of the team apparel to going as far as changing the name of the club from Delhi Daredevils to something else, several changes are reportedly lined up for the team.

As for the name of the franchise, Jindal Jr and Kiran Grandhi (of GMR) seem to be on the same page that the word ‘devil’ in Daredevils hasn’t worked in their favour and hence, the franchise could soon expect to get itself a new name.

Harbhajan may be Delhi’s next mentor

In what could be one of the major updates for the Delhi side, 39-year old Indian off-spinner Harbhajan Singh may be roped in to act as the mentor. Ponting is expected to be the sole shot-caller in the team, to be assisted only by Bhajji. As per sources, the off-spinner is being backed for the role owing to the recommendation from a leading former India cricketer. This might as well lead to Singh quitting to play for the Chennai Super Kings (CSK) and source claim, “don’t be surprised if Harbhajan decides to hang his boots.”

As per trusted sources, “Parth isn’t very comfortable with the captain being too flamboyant. He believes the individual heading the team should be more simple in his outlook and that is one of the things he’s spoken about internally.” Jindal has reportedly sent out a strong message to the team staff, indicating that the ones being “retained” will be informed explicitly about their role in the team; if not then there’s no need for them in the unit. Franchise CEO Hemant Dua is also said to have been taken by surprise at these developments.

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