Getting released by RR will make Steve Smith hungry for IPL 2021: Delhi Capitals' Ricky Ponting

WION Web Team
New Delhi, India Published: Apr 06, 2021, 08:30 PM(IST)

Getting released by RR will make Steve Smith hungry for IPL 2021: Delhi Capitals' Ricky Ponting Photograph:( AFP )

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Delhi Capitals head coach Ricky Ponting was left surprised by how DC snapped up Steve Smith on the cheap for the Indian Premier League (IPL) 2021. While Ponting hinted that Smith is not a definite starter in the DC playing XI, he said that the Australian batsman will have added motivation given he was released by Rajasthan Royals and mega-auction is approaching next season.  

Delhi Capitals head coach Ricky Ponting was left surprised by how DC snapped up Steve Smith on the cheap for the Indian Premier League (IPL) 2021. While Ponting hinted that Smith is not a definite starter in the DC playing XI, he said that the Australian batsman will have added motivation given he was released by Rajasthan Royals and mega-auction is approaching next season.  

Ponting revealed that Smith’s name wasn’t discussed during the auction strategy as they thought the Aussie would be too expensive for them. However, IPL 2021 auction left the former Aussie skipper surprised.

"I'm not really sure how we got him so cheap," Ponting told cricket.com.au this week ahead of the 2021 tournament, which starts on Friday.

"It was quite clear that a lot of other teams had more money than us going into the auction. A lot of other teams released more players, so they got a lot of their salary cap back.

"So going into the auction, we hadn't really spoken a lot about Smithy. His name did come up in some of the strategy stuff, but … we just thought 'we're getting outbid', simple as that. So we hadn't put that much time into it.

"I was on the phone at home actually watching the auction live and talking to our owners as it was all happening. And that one bid came from us, and it was one bid and bang! Sold to Delhi Capitals.

"It was actually quite remarkable how it turned out because that sort of class doesn't come around all the time and that sort of experience doesn't come around all the time."

While Smith will bring extensive experience along with him, he sees himself in a battle to start for DC in IPL 2021. With only four overseas players allowed, the likes of Kagiso Rabada, Anrich Nortje and Marcus Stonis have done enough to find their names on the team sheet. Smith will have to battle the likes of Shimron Hetmyer, Sam Billings, Chris Woakes and Tom Curran for the fourth overseas squad in the playing XI.

"I think the fact that he's been released from the franchise that he's been at for a long time will make him a bit hungry as well this year," he said.

"So, if he gets an opportunity with us – I think it will be in the top three somewhere – if he gets an opportunity, I'm sure he'll have a great year for us.

"I caught up with him (recently), he's very, very keen to go out there and perform well.

"Obviously the other side of that is there's a big auction again next year, so if he happens to have a really good IPL this year, then I'm sure that that price is going to go up for the coming season.

"(It's) great to have him as a part of our squad. As I said – even if he doesn't play, for instance, to have someone like that around with his sort of knowledge on the game and the T20 game, will be great for our group. I can't wait to work with him again.

"When you get a chance to play in a competition like that, which is as strong as it is, it can't hurt you, that's for sure. You can take so much from it because you're playing against the best players in the world for eight weeks in a row."

DC will start their IPL 2021 campaign against Chennai Super Kings at the Wankhede Stadium in Mumbai on April 10.

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