Where they finished in 2020
The Delhi Capitals finished as runners-up and were second on the points table.
They had a great first half but couldn’t carry their form through the tournament, losing steam towards the end.
They lost a significant number of matches towards the end but managed to hold onto their top two spots.
They faced Mumbai Indians in the final and lost their first-ever finals.
The bowling did an excellent job throughout the season, while the batting was a touch inconsistent.
Rishabh Pant struggled, and his only significant contribution was a fifty in the finals.
The most consistent batsman was Shikhar Dhawan, who finished as the second-highest scorer in the season.
The biggest test for the Delhi Capitals this season will be their performance under a new captain.
After a beautiful time in international Cricket, Rishabh Pant handed the captaincy in Iyer’s absence.
Coming into the season, the Delhi Capitals batting line-up has some positives and negatives.
Prithvi Shaw has found form and is likely to open with Shikhar Dhawan again, while Rishabh Pant has also grown into a firm batter.
With the T20I World Cup coming up, Shikhar Dhawan may replicate his performance from the previous season.
Along with the openers, the Delhi Capitals have acquired Steve Smith for a little more than his base price.
With the South African fast bowling pair missing the first game, and Shreyas Iyer missing the tournament, Steve Smith could be handy at number three.
The issue Delhi may face with the batting is the loss of Shreyas Iyer.
Iyer was a handy player at number three, and his absence may create a slight hole in the line-up.
Delhi has the likes of Ajinkya Rahane and Steve Smith, but neither may be as aggressive as Shreyas Iyer.
Another spot of bother would be Rishabh Pant’s batting form.
He has been in good form, and the Delhi Capitals will be hoping it doesn’t get affected with the extra burden of leading aside.
Chris Woakes is back in the side this year but may not make the starting eleven.
Delhi bought Anrich Nortje as a replacement in his absence, and the pacer formed an excellent partnership with Kagiso Rabada.
Separating the South African pair doesn’t seem easy, and Woakes could find himself on the bench again.
With Ishant Sharma back and Umesh Yadav bought in the auction, Delhi Capitals has a few third pacer options.
Their spin attack consists of Axar Patel, and Ravichandran Ashwin, with Amit Mishra in the fold.
Both Axar and Ashwin have had a fantastic season, and with the T20 World Cup coming up, Ashwin may see this as his best chance to bring himself back to the white ball side.
Young player to watch out for:
Rishabh Pant can no longer be considered a junior player in the side and is coming in as a captain this season.
He had a horrible time in IPL 2020, looking confused with his batting approach, but he seems all set to make amends this season.
Between the two IPLs, Rishabh Pant toured Australia, and helped win a series, found his way back in the white-ball squads, and now looks much fitter and confident than ever.
It will be interesting to see how the extra responsibility of leading a side changes him and if he can continue playing without feeling the captaincy’s burden.
Predicted XI (With the entire squad in contention)
- Shikhar Dhawan
- Prithvi Shaw
- Ajinkya Rahane
- Marcus Stoinis
- Rishabh Pant
- Shimron Hetmyer
- Axar Patel
- Ravichandran Ashwin
- Kagiso Rabada
- Anrich Nortje
- Umesh Yadav/Ishant Sharma/Amit Mishra