The Delhi Capitals, formerly known as the Delhi Daredevils, have not always been a side in contention for the IPL trophy. Despite having had a combination of talent and IPL greats over the years, they have never been able to reach even the finals of the league. They had their most successful season in 2019, where they reached the playoff stages of the tournament.
However, things have looked different for the Delhi Capitals over the last couple of years. Going by the team on paper, they are surely a force to be reckoned with in the 2020 season of the IPL.
After the rebranding from 'Delhi Daredevils' to 'Delhi Capitals' took place, the side has looked like a different outfit altogether. With young Shreyas Iyer donning the hat of the captain, the team was already full of young talents such as the likes of Rishabh Pant, Prithvi Shaw, Axar Patel, and Kagiso Rabada.
To add to that list, Delhi went on to pick more young explosive talent to their roster in the IPL 2020 auction, when they signed players such as Shimron Hetmyer and Alex Carey. This ensured that they had a plethora of options in every department, in case replacements are ever needed.
However, with a team full of young talent, the only category they lacked was that of experienced campaigners.
This year, they've invested heavily in that very category that they now have a pool of players who have been full-time captains in the past. With options such as these players in their roster, it is certain that Shreyas Iyer will have more than adequate help in the team's strategy sessions.
Here are 3 such players who are now a part of DC and have captained their former teams for entire editions of the previous IPL seasons.
#3 Ravichandran Ashwin
The veteran off-spinner and Indian test team mainstay came in as a revelation under MS Dhoni's captaincy at the Chennai Super Kings back in 2008.
Over the years, Ravichandran Ashwin came to be known as a thinking cricketer capable of drawing up his own plans for the opposition. After his stint with the Rising Pune Super Giants ended in 2017, Ashwin was brought into the Kings XI Punjab unit and was appointed as their captain with big names playing under him.
Having gotten the dream start to an IPL campaign if there ever was one, in 2018, KXIP ended up not making the playoffs from a position where it was harder not to reach the knockouts. The franchise did not make it to the playoffs in 2019 either, and managed to finish in 6th place. The off-spinner has captained his side in 28 IPL matches, out of which he has 12 wins and 16 losses to his name.
However, this by no means takes away anything from the strategic thinking ability of R Ashwin. With the experience he brings in apart from his confident character, he would certainly be an important part of Shreyas Iyer's leadership unit for the Delhi Capitals' 2020 IPL campaign.
#2 Ajinkya Rahane
The vice-captain of the Indian test outfit, Ajinkya Rahane has proven that he has a calm head on his shoulders ideal for leadership roles. While Rahane has been in and out of the Indian limited-overs side, the stylish batter has been an IPL mainstay.
His value as an IPL batsman who can milk the bowlers despite his classical batting shots has not gone unnoticed. So much so that the Mumbai batsman has either been retained by his team or has been in demand at the auction.
Having come into the IPL limelight under the leadership of Rahul Dravid, Rahane went on to become a senior IPL player, and eventually the skipper of the Rajasthan Royals when he was bought back in the 2018 IPL auction.
Rahane, however, was dropped as the skipper of the RR in 2019, owing to their poor performance in the tournament that year. With good scores in the following matches, he quickly proved that taking away the captaincy badge was not to deter his focus of scoring runs for his side.
With a steady cricketing brain like Rahane's, Delhi Capitals are bound to make decisions that make them a dependable team.
#1 Shikhar Dhawan
The explosive southpaw from Delhi, known for his everlasting energy on the field, has also previously led an IPL team in the past. Shikhar Dhawan captained his former side, the Sunrisers Hyderabad for 10 matches in the 2014 season.
Dhawan was a mainstay in the SRH outfit and was also a part of the team that won the IPL in 2016. Given that he was part of David Warner's SRH leadership unit, it's safe to assume that he has an idea of how to go about planning a successful IPL campaign.
Despite the fact that he won 4 out of the 10 matches he led SRH in, one can't simply write off the immense experience and knowledge that a senior member of the Indian cricket team such as Dhawan brings to the table.
The Capitals are set to pick up right where they left off in the 2019 season, and with the addition of these experienced leaders to add to their explosive young talent, they may even go all the way in the 2020 IPL season.