Kolkata: The dark horses of Indian Premier League (IPL) Delhi Capitals and Kings XI Punjab (KXIP) will face off each other in their first match on September 20 in Dubai. While none has win the title so far but are capable of pulling off surprises anytime.
With the teams both Delhi and KXIP have gathered this season, one can’t take their eyes off these two teams. If the likes of Chris Gayle, Jimmy Neesham, and KL Rahul boast the KXIP ranks, Delhi too have Shreyas Iyer, Kagiso Rabada, Shikhar Dhawan, Shimron Hetmyer in their armoury.
Led by Iyer, Delhi Capitals, which was earlier known as Delhi Daredevils (renamed in 2019) reached the semifinals twice in 2008 and 2009. They made the playoffs in 2012 and last year when they had two-time World Cup-winning former Australia skipper Ricky Ponting, former India captain Sourav Ganguly and Mohammed Kaif. While Ganguly had to leave the role since he became the BCCI president, the other two are still with the side.
Squad: Shreyas Iyer (Captain), Rishabh Pant, Shimron Hetmyer, Ravichandran Ashwin, Ajinkya Rahane, Shikhar Dhawan, Axar Patel, Marcus Stoinis, Kagiso Rabada, Amit Mishra, Alex Carey, Jason Roy, Anrich Nortje, Prithvi Shaw, Ishant Sharma, Avesh khan, Keemo Paul, Mohit Sharma, Harshal Patel, Sandeep Lamichhane, Tushar Deshpande, Lalit Yadav.
Delhi Capitals named Anrich Nortje as a replacement for England all-rounder Chris Woakes.
Kings XI Punjab (KXIP)
Led by swashbuckling Indian opener Rahul, KXIP’s best finish was in 2014 when they finished runners-up against Kolkata Knight Riders. The final will be memorable for one Kolkata guy — Wriddhiman Saha who smashed a whirlwind century which went in vain.
Apart from the 2014 season, the team has made only one other playoff appearance in 12 seasons and haven’t lifted the IPL title to date.
Squad: KL Rahul (Captain), Glenn Maxwell, Sheldon Cottrell, Krishnappa Gowtham, Karun Nair, Mohammed Shami, Nicholas Pooran, Mujeeb Ur Rahman, Chris Jordan, Chris Gayle, Ravi Bishnoi, Mandeep Singh, Mayank Agarwal, Hardus Viljoen, Prabhsimran Singh, Deepak Hooda, Jimmy Neesham, Darshan Nalkande, Sarfaraz Khan, Arshdeep Singh, Harpreet Brar, Jagadeesha Suchith, Murugan Ashwin, Tajinder Singh, Ishan Porel.