Ahead of Delhi Capitals’ clash against RCB, Tom Moody has opined that he would personally want Delhi to stick with Ravichandran Ashwin over Axar Patel. On the other hand, Moody also expressed that the franchise should continue to pick Harshal Patel in the playing XI over Ishant Sharma.
In just their first encounter of the season against Kings XI Punjab, Delhi Capitals were handed a piece of bad news, with their marquee signing Ravichandran Ashwin walking off the pitch with an injury. However, while they did an impressive job without his services against CSK, his return against KKR wasn’t the best outing for the off-spinner, leading to doubt over his place for the next game against RCB.
However, former SRH coach Tom Moody opined that he would still persist with the experienced off-spinner Ravichandran Ashwin in the playing XI over the sharp and accurate Axar Patel. In addition, former Indian wicketkeeper Deep Dasgupta too was of a similar opinion that Ashwin should continue to play for DC in the next game.
“I would be personally sticking with Ashwin, four overs on offer, who would be the bowler to have more on offer. Ashwin has proved over time that he is an absolute asset to any franchise and can pick wickets in the middle overs. So I would pick him over Axar Patel just with his experience in the middle overs.” said Tom Moody in an ESPNCricinfo video.
“Well I understand why Axar Patel comes in as the competition for Ashwin. But if you are looking at Ashwin just from the Sharjah game, it would be highly unfair to drop him. If you look at his performance in the first game (against KXIP) he picked up two wickets in his first over. So I mean it’s a difficult call but they shouldn’t drop him because of the game in Sharjah.” Deep Dasgupta opined.
The other focal point of discussion for the franchise would be - Harshal Patel’s place over Ishant Sharma. While the pacer hasn’t done anything bad, Patel’s ability to bowl well in the middle overs earned him a place against KKR in Sharjah. Moody agreed that the all-rounder should continue to play against RCB.
“Look, Ishant Sharma is more effective early on with the new ball. But going by Delhi’s tactics, they aim to bowl the South African pace duo of Rabada-Nortje in the early overs. Going by that, I think they would want to stick with Harshal who can offer them overs in the middle more effectively than Ishant.”