Former Indian cricketer Gautam Gambhir believes that Delhi Capitals (DC) spinner, Ravichandran Ashwin, has been underutilized by the franchise owing to his under-par performances this season. Ashwin has picked up a meagre 5 wickets in 12 matches in IPL 2021 so far.
Ashwin has also been added to Team India’s squad for the upcoming T20 World Cup. He’ll be making a comeback to the T20 side after nearly four years. Whether he is good enough to be included in the playing XI is yet to be seen. If results for DC are anything to go by, it’s very unlikely that Ashwin will play in the World Cup.
“Delhi Capitals have not underutilized Ashwin because he has not looked that convincing. So hopefully he will do the job because, on a wicket like Sharjah against left-handers, DC will back him.”
“We always say, the man of his stature, you cannot leave him out of an IPL team or T20 cricket, he’s just a different bowler. When he plays IPL or T20 cricket, he just becomes this finger spinner with variations and I’d much rather have a conventional off-spinner,” Gambhir said.
“If Smith doesn’t play, Dhawan will have to anchor the innings” – Gautam Gambhir
The former opener also stressed the importance of including Steve Smith. The tracks in Sharjah so far this season have been conducive to bowling and if anyone’s capable of playing on tough tracks, it’s Smith. This will also allow Shikhar Dhawan to be more aggressive at the top, Gambhir said.
“The kind of batting lineup DC has, they can, without Steve Smith, make 160, or can get out on 80-90 as well. So, I would definitely want someone like Smith to put some runs on the board. If they play Smith, Dhawan can be aggressive at the top. If Smith does not play then he will have to anchor the innings,” Gambhir added.
DC takes on Kolkata in Qualifier 2 in Sharjah on Wednesday. A win for either side will take them into the grand final against CSK, to be played on October 15 in Dubai.