'He played big part in them reaching the finals in 2020': Lara names 'exceptional talent' whose form is a concern for DC
- As Delhi Capitals battle Kolkata Knight Riders in Qualifier 2 on Wednesday, Brian Lara names one player who DC would love to see back in form.
Last year, the Delhi Capitals reached the IPL final for the first time in 13 years. Called 'perennial underachievers' for years, the Capitals brushed aside the tag and played top-notch cricket to ensure a place in the final, and even though they came up short in the summit clash against Mumbai Indians, it was a sign of things to come. What Delhi Daredevils' years of star-studded line-ups couldn't achieve, this Capitals unit did on the back of some sensational performances led by a dynamic captain in Shreyas Iyer.
A year later, here we are again. DC have continued their impressive run from last year, and with 20 points, finished at the top of the points-table at the end of the league stage. Once again, everyone has chipped in equally, despite there being a few individual dips. One such case is that of Kagiso Rabada. The pacer has so far had a sub-standard outing in the ongoing edition of the Indian Premier League, managing just 13 wickets in 14 matches.
Rabada's form may not have hindered Delhi Capitals' campaign, who easily made it to the playoffs, but former West Indies legend Brian Lara, a member of the elite IPL panel, chalked it as a sign of worry as the tournament reached its business end. Speaking on Star Sports Dugout, the former cricketer called Rabada an 'exceptional talent' before adding that he has failed to replicate his show from the previous edition.
"Yes (his form is a concern for Delhi), he is an exceptional talent. He played a big part in them getting to the finals (in 2020), he got a lot of wickets in the middle and backend overs with slower balls, and that has not been happening for him of late," said Lara.
Rabada had won the Purple Cap in IPL 2020 after picking 30 wickets from 17 matches. However, this time around the 26-year-old has witnessed a dip in his form, something that can hurt Rishabh Pant, who aims to win the IPL trophy in his maiden season as captain. Lara added that Rabada has not been able to give his teammate Anrich Nortje the support from the other end, which is expected of him for carrying such a high reputation.
“When you have Anrich Nortje doing the business upfront, you want a world-class bowler who can do what he did in the previous tournaments, which he hasn’t, and this has cost him a little bit of anxiousness. I suppose Delhi Capitals will love to see Rabada back in form,” added Lara.
The Capitals who failed to secure a final berth in the first attempt, will look to make quick amends when they take on Eoin Morgan's Kolkata Knight Riders in Qualifier 2 on Wednesday evening.