Axar Patel Photograph:( Agencies )
Commenting on DC’s chances in IPL 2020, all-rounder Axar Patel has said with top quality new recruitments, the franchise has ticked all the boxes and are well capable of going all the way in the tournament, set to commence on September 19 in the United Arab Emirates (UAE).
Ahead of the much-awaited Indian Premier League (IPL) 2020, many experts and pundits have named Delhi Capitals (DC) as one of the favourites to win the tournament or at least qualify for the playoffs. Commenting on DC’s chances in IPL 2020, all-rounder Axar Patel has said with top quality new recruitments, the franchise has ticked all the boxes and are well capable of going all the way in the tournament, set to commence on September 19 in the United Arab Emirates (UAE).
Delhi Capitals have added the likes of Ajinkya Rahane, Ravichandran Ashwin, Marcus Stoinis, Alex Carey among others to their ranks and are looking pretty solid on paper. However, they would need to better their performances from last year in a bid to end the trophy drought.
"With the new changes, I think the squad looks good. With fast bowlers, spinners and all-rounders, we have covered all the bases and I think we can become champions this time. Everyone looks positive in the nets and we all are in good shape,” Axar Patel said on Tuesday.
The 26-year-old further lamented the lack of crowds during the IPL as he said players will feel empty without the supporters in the stands.
"Obviously, with no crowd, we'll feel empty. Then, the saliva ban is going to make a big difference for the bowlers. During initial practice sessions, I was being conscious of not using saliva or sweat on the ball. So, these are the challenges which we will have to be wary of," he said.
"Nevertheless, the positive thing is that at least we will have action-packed cricket after a long time, which is a good thing for not only us, but also for India. Everyone will enjoy the game with a different frame of mind which will be really exciting," he said.
According to BCCI’s SOP, players and support staff will be tested every five days during the course of the tournament.
"We are feeling a little bad that we can't enjoy the matches with our friends. After every two days, tests are being conducted. We can't go out anywhere and we can't sit for more than 15 minutes in anyone's room, so these things are challenging, but slowly we are getting used to it," he added.
Speaking on how he is preparing for the first match against Kings XI Punjab on Sunday, Axar said, "First of all, it feels really good to be back playing on the ground after being off from cricket for a long time due to lockdown," he said.
"Since we are in the tournament week, it feels really good and the boys are in a positive frame. I feel I am practicing with a positive mindset. I have ticked all the boxes in bowling, batting and fielding, so I think I have prepared well enough," he concluded.