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IPL: Why Delhi Daredevils keep breaking my heart, again and again

With two wins and six defeats in IPL 2017, Delhi Daredevils, captained by Zaheer Khan and mentored by Rahul Dravid, languish at the bottom of the points table

ipl 2017 Updated: May 02, 2017 12:04 IST
Sidak Anand
Sidak Anand
New Delhi
IPL 2017,Delhi Daredevils,DD
Fans during the IPL 2017 match between Delhi Daredevils and Kings XI Punjab at Feroz Shah Kotla in Delhi on April 15. Delhi Daredevils are eighth and last in the IPL points table(BCCI)

In 2008, I discovered a new love -- cricket or should I say, the Delhi Daredevils. It was a strong side led by Virender Sehwag, and we fought our way to the Indian Premier League semifinals for two consecutive years before the downfall started.

The two glorious years were straight out of a fairytale, where almost everything went our way. The level of competition was impeccable, and we were at the top of our game. The passion of the fans and players was something to be cherished. If something was missing, it was the IPL trophy. (RESULTS | STANDINGS)

The Delhi Daredevils’ fairytale is one that hasn’t had a happy ‘ending’. Finishing low on the points table since 2010, the team’s performance has consistently been below par. (Delhi Daredevils vs Sunrisers Hyderabad preview)

Delhi Daredevil captain Zaheer Khan during the opening ceremony at the Feroz Shah Kotla on April 15. ( BCCI )

We did have an odd season where we managed to reach the playoffs after topping the table, but we’ve failed to deliver when it has mattered.

After years of suffering and seeing 11 captains at the helm, we find ourselves in the 10th season, and the feeling is all too familiar. We’re tired and it’s time for change, which we rightly deserve.

We are one of the three teams yet to lift the trophy, Royal Challengers Bangalore and Kings XI Punjab completing the list.

Mumbai Indians’s bowler Mitchell John McClenaghan (L) celebrates the dismissal of Sanju Samson during the IPL match against Delhi Daredevils in Mumbai. ( PTI )

This is a statistic that is embarrassing considering the outstanding players on the team’s roster. We may not have the best mix of names, but it is good enough to compete with the other top teams.

One of the main problems in recent years is that we are reliant on young players to rack up the runs, mainly as a result of injuries and international commitments of the big names.

We can’t rely solely on youth.

Also, the team owners have allowed big names to leave, including the likes of AB de Villiers, David Warner, Andre Russell, Gautam Gambhir, Daniel Vettori, the list goes on. This has resulted in lack of consistency in the XI, affecting the team’s chemistry.

Delhi Daredevils captain Zaheer Khan and mentor Rahul Dravid during a training session at Eden Garden in Kolkata. ( PTI )

It is becoming a routine for fans to start the season with optimism while waiting for another freefall. This is unfair on the fans who have given them unflinching support for a decade.

We’re not urging the Delhi Daredevils to conquer the IPL right away. All we seek is consistency so that we can finish the season with our heads held high.

At the moment, the Delhi Daredevils are playing the devil, breaking fans’ hearts. It is time they change their ways.

(Sidak Anand is a Class XI student. Views are his personal)

First Published: May 02, 2017 11:50 IST