Zaheer Khan will lead Delhi Daredevils in this edition of the IPL as well    IANS
Zaheer Khan will lead Delhi Daredevils in this edition of the IPL as well IANS

Delhi Daredevils (DD) will begin their campaign against last year s runners-up Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) on April 8. However, they do not play their first home game till April 15, when they take on Kings XI Punjab (KXIP) at the Feroz Shah Kotla. They have been rather inconsistent in the last couple of seasons. In fact, they finished sixth in the previous edition, in spite of having talented players such as Quinton de Kock, Shreyas Iyer, Sam Billings, Sanju Samson, Chris Morris, among others. They were dealt with a further blow when JP Duminy decided to pull out of the tournament due to personal reasons. The franchise is yet to name his replacement. READ: IPL 2017 revised Schedule: Fixture, Dates, Match Timings and Venue Details

DD have a good set of young Indian players, who were mentored by none other than Rahul Dravid last season. The likes of Karun Nair, Iyer, Rishabh Pant and Jayant Yadav are part of this talented group of players, who have reached new heights. While Pant made his T20I debut, Nair and Jayant earned their Test caps. Iyer won awards for his excellent show in the domestic season. Zaheer Khan will, however, continue to lead the young DD side.

Daredevils have, however, purchased the likes of Kagiso Rabada and all-rounder Corey Anderson, which are the major positives. Not to forget, Pat Cummins, who was purchased at Rs. 4.5 crores, has clock over 145 kmph. They have too many all-rounders for their liking. Chris Morris, Angelo Mathews and Carlos Brathwaite are the all-rounders in the current setup, but with Mathews injured and Morris leaving for national duty in the middle of the tournament, DD might be overly dependent on Brathwaite, who now leads West Indies in the shortest format. However, they also have five wicketkeepers in Billings, Aditya Tare, de Kock, Pant and Sanju Samson.

A few of DD s fixtures had to be altered due to municipal elections in Delhi. Here are Delhi Daredevils fixtures for IPL 2017:

Team 1 Team 2 Venue Date Time Day
Royal Challengers Bangalore Delhi Daredevils Bengaluru 8-Apr 8:00 PM Sat
Rising Pune Supergiant Delhi Daredevils Pune 11-Apr 8:00 PM Tue
Delhi Daredevils Kings XI Punjab Delhi 15-Apr 8:00 PM Sat
Delhi Daredevils Kolkata Knight Riders Delhi 17-Apr 4:00 PM Mon
Sunrisers Hyderabad Delhi Daredevils Hyderabad 19-Apr 8:00 PM Wed
Mumbai Indians Delhi Daredevils Mumbai 22-Apr 8:00 PM Sat
Kolkata Knight Riders Delhi Daredevils Kolkata 28-Apr 4:00 PM Fri
Kings XI Punjab Delhi Daredevils Mohali 30-Apr 4:00 PM Sun
Delhi Daredevils Sunrisers Hyderabad Delhi 2-May 8:00 PM Tue
Delhi Daredevils Gujarat Lions Delhi 4-May 8:00 PM Thu
Delhi Daredevils Mumbai Indians Delhi 6-May 8:00 PM Sat
Gujarat Lions Delhi Daredevils Kanpur 10-May 8:00 PM Wed
Delhi Daredevils Rising Pune Supergiant Delhi 12-May 8:00 PM Fri
Delhi Daredevils Royal Challengers Bangalore Delhi 14-May 8:00 PM Sun

DD have not had a fruitful time in the last four seasons. Their best finish was when they ended up sixth in the previous season. They have never been able to match the first couple of good seasons, but they certainly do have a squad, who can take them all the way. The absence of Duminy is a major loss, but if all the individuals perform to their potential, there is no reason why they cannot go on to win this edition of the tournament. With some sensible purchases in the auction, they are certainly off to a good start.

Delhi Daredevils squad for IPL 2017: Zaheer Khan (c), JP Duminy, Mohammed Shami, Quinton de Kock (wk), Shahbaz Nadeem, Mayank Agarwal, Jayant Yadav, Amit Mishra, Shreyas Iyer, Sam Billings (wk), Sanju Samson (wk), Chris Morris, Carlos Brathwaite, Karun Nair, Rishabh Pant (wk), Chama Milind, Syed Khaleel Ahmed, Pratyush Singh, Aditya Tare (wk), Ankeet Bawane, Pat Cummins, Kagiso Rabada, Angelo Mathews, Navdeep Saini, Murugan Ashwin, Shashank Singh, Corey Anderson