Quinton de Kock finished as the leading run-scorer for DD with 445 runs © AFP
Quinton de Kock finished as the leading run-scorer for DD with 445 runs © AFP

Another IPL season is set to end, and again Delhi Daredevils (DD) have failed to qualify for the playoffs. Sitting comfortably at the second spot in IPL 2016 Points Table having won 5 games from 7 in the first half of the season, a poor second half meant they failed to reach the top 4 for the fourth season running. While earlier campaigns saw them rely majorly on international talents and star names, this season saw a major shift. Firstly, Rahul Dravid was brought in as the mentor for the side, and experienced Zaheer Khan was made the skipper. More noticeably, young Indian players were shown a lot of confidence. While trust and reliance on the inexperienced players did not work this season for Delhi Daredevils (DD), they would hope to learn from the mistakes and improve henceforth. ALSO READ: IPL 2016: DD hampered by questionable decisions

Delhi saw few players perform quite well during the course of the tournament. While the likes of Quinton de Kock and Chris Morris excelled, there were disappointments in the form of Pawan Negi and Mohammed Shami. R Narayan reviews the players performance, and gives them marks out of 10.

Chris Morris (9/10): Undoubtedly the best player in Delhi Daredevils (DD) side, Morris was at his best with both bat and ball. He missed all but two games in the season, and scalped 13 wickets at an economy rate of 7, as well as chipping in with 195 runs at an humongous strike rate of 179. The highlight of his tournament was the unbeaten 32-ball 82, which almost won his side an impossible match. Surely one of those players who can keep his head high. ALSO READ: Exclusion of Shreyas, Nadeem for upcoming tours baffling

Zaheer Khan (8/10): Before the start of the tournament, Delhi Daredevils (DD) were critcised for appointing ‘Zak’ as the skipper. But just as he had done on so many occasions for India, he shut his critics by his brilliant bowling and excellent captaincy. In what was probably his last campaign, he scalped 10 wickets from 12 matches at a economy rate of 7.71. But the most impressive thing about Zaheer was his captaincy, which was at its best in the first half of the campaign.

Quinton de Kock (7.5/10): The lone fighter in the most inexperienced batting unit of IPL, de Kock showed his class, amassing 445 runs from 13 games. Despite blowing ‘hot and cold’ at times, he was by far the best batsman in the side. The highlight of his season was a match-winning century against Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB), which was one of the best knocks in recent times by any batsman.

Amit Mishra (7/10): At his usual self, Mishra was once again effective for Delhi Daredevils (DD). While another of those who wasn’t at his best, ‘Mishi’ was still able to scalp 13 wickets from 14 matches at an economy rate of 7.47. He had a night to remember in Match 7 against Kings XI Punjab (KXIP), as he scalped 4 for 11 to decimate the opponents.

Carlos Brathwaite (6.5/10): The hero of West Indies’ win in ICC T20 World Cup 2016 final, much was expected of Brathwaite in his debut IPL season. Yet, he did not fire in the tournament the way he was expected to. Much of the reason was the lack of opportunities, as he only made eight appearances. Still, some flashes of his brilliance were at view, especially in game against Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR), when he scored 11-ball 34 and took 3 wickets.

Karun Nair (6/10): Much was expected of the young Indian batsman before the start of IPL, but most of them failed to deliver. While Nair did score 357 runs from 14 matches, the player himself would be the first to agree he was not great. Despite that, his match-winning unbeaten 83 against Sunrisers Hyderabad (SRH) in Delhi Daredevils’ (DD) penultimate game showed what he is capable of.

Nathan Coulter-Nile (6/10): One of the least used players in the squad, Coulter-Nile was more than handy whenever he got his chances. Three wickets from 4 games at an economy rate of 7.60 is decent, but the lack of chances was the issue for him. He was particularly impressive against SRH, when he scalped 2 for 25 from his 4 overs.

Rishabh Pant (6/10): One youngster who should not be criticised for his displays, Pant was a bit of revelation in Delhi team. The 19-year-old showed maturity beyond his age to score 198 runs from 10 matches, mostly batting down the order. But high rating eluded him due to the fact he failed to take his chances at the top order. His 69 against Gujarat Lions (GL) was his best performance. A definite player for the future.

JP Duminy (5.5/10): One of the most experienced player in the squad, Duminy was one of those struggling for form in IPL 2016. Having relinquished the captaincy to Zaheer this season, his batting was well below par. A total of 191 runs from 10 games at a strike rate of 122 tells the tale of a forgettable campaign. His unbeaten 49 against Mumbai Indians (MI) was particularly impressive, which setup his side’s win.

Sam Billings (5/10): Another of those who struggled to get opportunities, Billings did not quite build on the half-century he scored against KKR in his debut game. While that innings oozed class, since then he only managed 34 runs from four games. Yet, the potential is definitely there, and if regularly played, he may be key for Delhi next season.

Sanju Samson (5/10): A disappointment of Delhi Daredevils’ (DD) campaign, much was expected of Samson, but he delivered little. One of the most technically sound batsman around, Samson only managed 291 runs from 14 matches. He was shifted all around the batting line-up, yet he only showed flashes of form. His 60 against MI though early in the season was a eye-catching innings.

Imran Tahir (4/10): Unlike his fellow South African mates, Tahir was very ordinary in IPL 2016. While he only got 4 matches under his belt, he was clearly not at his usual self, which was at show in the game against MI, in which he conceded a whooping 59 runs from 4 overs. Surely one of the disappointments.

Jayant Yadav (4/10): The 26-year-old has recently been selected for India’s tour of Zimbabwe, yet, his form in IPL was not anywhere near good. He played a total of 5 matches, and managed to scalp only 2 wickets.

Shahbaz Nadeem (4/10): The leading wicket-taker in the 2015-16 season of Ranji Trophy, much was expected of Nadeem by Delhi. But he had a torrid IPL, playing a mere 4 matches, and scalping 2 wickets at an economy of 8.46. Another of those who had a season to forget.

Mayank Agarwal (3/10): He came, he played, he failed, he went. Agarwal was one of those young players with whom hopes were pinned. But he delivered very little in the chances his got. While 3 matches cannot determine a player’s capability, mere 27 runs are also not defendable.

Shreyas Iyer (3/10): By far the biggest disappointment of Delhi Daredevils’ (DD) campaign, if not in whole of IPL. The leading run-scorer from Ranji Trophy season just could not score runs in IPL 2016. His six matches only garnered 30 runs, which is clearly unacceptable. While his form cannot underline his talent, Iyer surely needs to work out on a thing or another.

Mohammed Shami (2/10): An Indian international and part of India’s ICC World Cup 2015 team, Shami was expected to lead DD’s bowling attack. But come the end of IPL 2016, he had managed to scalp 5 wickets from 8 matches, at an abysmal economy of 9.69. It is a fact he was coming off an injury, but Shami could have done a little more.

Pawan Negi (2/10): IPL Auction 2016, Pawan Negi is bought by DD for a whooping Rs 8.5 crores. End of DD’s campaign in IPL 2016, Pawan Negi had only managed to score 57 runs at a strike rate of less than 100, as well as take a solitary wicket. His shocker of a tournament was summed up, when he scored a 12-ball 6 in the final game against RCB, which piled pressure on other players.

While Delhi were the team who mad the most number of changes, it was only the above 18 players who managed to get a game. The players like Khaleel Ahmed, Akhil Herwadkar , Mahipal Lomror, Chama Milind, Pratyush Singh and Pawan Suyal were unfortunate to not get even a single match over the course of the season. Even before the season started, Australian Joel Paris was unfortunately ruled out of the tournament through injury.

(R Narayan is a reporter with CricketCountry, and is an ardent cricket and football enthusiast (big Manchester United fan). Having followed cricket since 2003, he likes high scoring matches as well as good fast bowling. His Twitter handle is @RNarayan24nov)