Delhi Capitals (DC) bowling coach James Hopes on Monday (September 27) said Shreyas Iyer’s return has enabled the side to field an ideal bowling line-up, especially playing Anrich Nortje and Kagiso Rabada together in the ongoing second leg of the Indian Premier League (IPL 2021).
With Iyer being sidelined due to a shoulder injury in the first half of IPL 2021 in India, Steve Smith had to be drafted into the middle-order, forcing DC to either play Nortje or Rabada. Noteworthy, Nortje was also down with COVID-19 in the initial part of the tournament.
However, Shreyas managed to return for the second phase of the IPL 14 and it allowed DC to field an ideal bowling line-up and the team is reaping its benefits in the ongoing tournament in the UAE.
The bowling coach also lauded the fast-bowling duo of Rabada and Nortje, saying the South African bowlers ensured DC to play attacking and aggressive cricket in the ongoing IPL 2021.
Rabada and Nortje both have been terrorizing the batters in the tournament and Hopes said he would be disappointed if they weren't attacking and aggressive in the ongoing IPL 14 in the UAE.
Hopes said ahead of DC’s next game against KKR: “To be honest the two of them bowl 150 kmph an hour so I'd be disappointed if they weren't attacking and aggressive. But having both those guys on the park has really enabled us to do that in the power play.
At the start of the tournament, with Shreyas being out we decided to play Steve and I think all along our ideal line-up had Nortje and Rabada in it, but we just couldn't afford to do that at the start of the tournament.”
On Iyer and Rishabh Pant’s captaincy style, the bowling coach noted: “They both plan very well, they're both calm, they don't overreact, or under-react to the situation. And the thing I think we've seen in the first two games is that they feed off each other really well when they bat together, their styles complement each other exceptionally well.”
He further added, “Not much has changed, to be honest like it's just, it's like all systems go, like, a few years ago when we made the move to Shreyas (as captain), it was a long-term plan to get this team into this position and just because Shreyas is not captaining at the moment it doesn't mean that he is not a very senior player in this team. Rishabh has captained the team beautifully and we expect him to continue to do so.”
In the ongoing IPL 2021, DC is currently ranked second in the points table and is a team to beat, but he feels the team is still a little bit sloppy in the field, saying Delhi isn’t yet at its peak in the UAE.
Hopes signed off by saying, “We are getting there but, to be honest, we were still a little bit sloppy in the field, but we give them a little bit of pass on that like it's 42 degrees or whatever it is and it's not, not that easy to run around for an hour and a half. We've still got four pool games to go and, and we've got the finals after that, hopefully. So, yet we're getting there but we haven't peaked just yet, but we're starting to show signs that we're on the right track, definitely.”
(With PTI Inputs)