Delhi Capitals emerged as one of the most improved franchises in IPL 2019. The side finished third position on the points table but they lost the Qualifier 2 against the Chennai Super Kings in the playoffs. Even though they did not lift the title, their performance impressed the fans.
Ricky Ponting and Sourav Ganguly played a massive role in the team’s improvement as both the legends were a part of their backroom staff. The team selection and their strategies proved to be right on the money. They went from being a struggling side to the third best team in just one year. As Sourav Ganguly has become the BCCI President, he will not be available for IPL 2020 hence, Ponting will have to take the charge.
As the 13th auction of IPL is just a few days away, Ponting will have an eye on some big Australian names which will go under the hammer this year. Delhi already has a solid Indian contingent hence, he must have kept the following three Aussies on his IPL Auction 2020 wish-list.
#3 Jhye Richardson
23-year-old Australian fast bowler Jhye Richardson will hope to make his IPL debut in the year 2020. He made his T20 international debut in the year 2017. He has played 9 T20s for his nation and has shown that he has the potential to lead the Aussie pace attack in the future.
Jhye has taken 9 wickets in the 204 balls he has bowled in T20I cricket. His best figures are 2/32 but he has good numbers in the T20 leagues.
Richardson had grabbed the cricket world’s attention by scalping Virat Kohli’s wicket in his very first ODI match where he returned with figures of 4/26. Besides, he has 34 wickets to his name in 31 T20 matches at an economy rate of 8.34. His strike rate of 19.7 shows that he can take wickets at regular intervals hence, he could support Kagiso Rabada well in the pace attack.
#2 Ben Cutting
Mumbai Indians surprised many cricket fans by releasing their all-rounder Ben Cutting before the 13th edition of Indian Premier League. Ben had been associated with this franchise since the last 2 years. Before Mumbai Indians, he had played for Rajasthan Royals and Sunrisers Hyderabad in the IPL.
Cutting did not have a great outing in the 2019 IPL he could make it to the playing XI in just 3 matches. In those 3 games, he aggregated mere 18 runs with his highest score being 13. His bowling performance was also not up to the mark as he got only 1 wicket from his 2 overs, conceding 27 runs.
Even though his previous season’s stats are not ideal, Ricky Ponting might consider buying him as he can fill in the place of Chris Morris who has been released by the side.
Apart from that, he had been in good form during the Abu Dhabi T10 League thus, Ponting would look to get him in the Delhi squad.
#1 Mitchell Starc
The player who would be on the radar of all the franchises during the auction is the Australian pacer, Mitchell Starc. The left-handed fast bowler may return to the IPL this year after missing the previous editions because of injury. Starc had earlier played for Royal Challengers Bangalore in the tourney.
Delhi Capitals can form a stellar fast bowling attack by recruiting Starc in the team. The team has only 3 overseas players in their squad and they would not mind breaking the bank to gain the services of the Aussie fast bowler. Besides, he can also make up for Trent Boult’s absence in the side.
The New South Wales fast bowler has played in just 2 seasons IPL. He made his IPL debut in 2014 but his best performance came in the year 2015. Starc bagged 20 wickets in the year 2015 as compared to just 14 wickets in 2014. His bowling average also improved from 28.71 in 2014 to 14.55 in the year 2015. Looking at his current form, Ricky Ponting would be keen to bring the pace bowler in the Delhi-based franchise.