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Delhi Daredevils

Vinay Anand February 20, 2012
Delhi Daredevils Logo

Delhi Daredevils Logo

Delhi Daredevils was bought by a company known the most in India for building really good airports, the GMR Group which is owned by the reclusive but charismatic GM Rao. It was purchased for $84 million in the 2007 team auction, making it one of the least expensive teams back then.

Its home ground has always been the Feroz Shah Kotla, despite the criticism it receives many a times for its poor pitches especially for T20 cricket. In the 2008 auction, Delhi was able to snap the opening pair of Virender Sehwag and Gautam Gambhir, both of them hailing from the capital city itself and played a crucial role in India’s World T20 victory in South Africa in 2007. Sehwag was named the captain and the icon player of the side. They managed to pick utility players who are also big names in this format of the game such as the legendary Australian pacer Glenn McGrath, Mohammad Asif, Shoaib Malik, AB de Villiers, Tillakratne Dilshan, Farveez Maharoof, Daniel Vettori, Dinesh Karthik and Manoj Tiwary to name a few.

Besides, in order to increase the branding of the team, they roped in Bollywood star Akshay Kumar as their brand ambassador for the first season, mainly looking at the fact that Akshay incidentally hails from the city as well although he has been residing in Mumbai over the years. Also, the famous singer Kailash Kher was offered to sing the now former theme song of the team which was named as ‘Khel Front Foot Pe’.

It was all set to be a season of fireworks and ofcourse ‘daredevilry’ from the team as it looked to live up to its name and make the capital city proud of its existence in the tournament.

Delhi Daredevils in 2008 – 3rd position

Delhi Daredevils Launch Party - Local boys, Virender Sehwag, Actor Akshay Kumar, Gautam Gambhir and others

Delhi Daredevils Launch Party - Local boys, Virender Sehwag, Actor Akshay Kumar, Gautam Gambhir and others

Delhi Daredevils started off the inaugural season of the IPL in style, winning their opening match against a team which would go to become the champions of the tournament, Rajasthan Royals. They thrashed them by 9 wickets, at Feroz Shah Kotla with the Sri Lankan bowling all-rounder Farveez Maharoof winning the first man of the match award for the Daredevils. The same result was then inflicted on one of the favourites coming into the tournament, Deccan Chargers but this was in Hyderabad. Virender Sehwag won the man of the match award for his unbeaten 41-ball 94 in the run chase.

The first defeat for the Daredevils in the competition was against the Yuvraj Singh-led Kings XI Punjab in Mohali, where they lost by 4 wickets. But they were still on the top of the table at this stage, alongside the Kolkata Knight Riders. They went on to win the next two games, one being against the Royal Challengers Bangalore in Delhi but was a close 10-run win courtesy the legendary Glenn McGrath’s spell of 4/29 in 4 overs. While the other win was in Chennai against the Chennai Super Kings, with Sehwag’s all-round performance helping the team prevail by 8 wickets as he picked 1/21 in 2 overs and smashed a 41-ball 71.

But what followed was a four match losing streak for the team. They were unable to overcome a considerably weaker Mumbai Indians team in Navi Mumbai, losing by 29 runs even though the target was way below 150. Chennai Super Kings made a trip to Delhi and prevailed at the Kotla by 4 wickets thanks to some lustrous hitting from fast bowler Manpreet Gony, as Sehwag gained flak for the fact that he gave Pakistani off-spinner Shoaib Malik the 20th over to bowl.

And there were two away defeats, in the hands of Rajasthan Royals at Jaipur which had now become much stronger than before. As well as the Kolkata Knight Riders at the Eden Gardens where he failed to chase a target of 130, as Shoaib Akhtar made a huge impact in his very first match of the IPL for Kolkata.

But the streak was arrested with a victory against the Deccan Chargers at home by 12 runs with the leg-spinner Amit Mishra picking the first five wicket haul in the tournament by any Delhi bowler. Unfortunately, they lost to the Kings XI Punjab in a home game with the rain playing truant, as the D/L method proved that the Daredevils were short by 6 runs in the end. Fortunately though, their next game was against the woefully out of sorts Royal Challengers Bangalore in Bangalore, where they prevailed by 5 wickets courtesy a complete team performance, so much so that the man of the match was Shreevats Goswami, who was from the opposition side!

The match against Kolkata at home was washed out due to rain, which made their game against Mumbai (also at home) a must win one otherwise there was a big possibility that Mumbai might have sneaked into the last four. This was the ultimate knockout match, but Delhi held their nerve to win by 5 wickets, as the Tamil Nadu wicketkeeper-batsman Dinesh Karthik became the toast of the capital city for a few days, with an unbeaten 32-ball 56 in the run chase.

The semifinal was against the rampant Rajasthan Royals in Mumbai, with the winner of the match guaranteed a place in the final alongside the Chennai Super Kings. However, Delhi Daredevils were clearly not at their best, as they never were in the game at any stage. It is another fact that Rajasthan clinically outplayed them in the end, as Shane Warne’s men prevailed by a thumping 105-run margin and sadly Delhi’s quest of winning the IPL in the very first season came to an abrupt end when they were on the verge of doing so.

Yet, it was evident that for the first three seasons, Delhi Daredevils was one of the major threats for most of the teams in the competition with the all-round firepower that they possessed. Delhi Daredevils however, qualified for the Champions League 2008 which was scheduled to be played towards the end of the year in India, but the event was cancelled on the grounds of the unfortunate terrorist attacks in Mumbai in November 2008.

Delhi Daredevils in 2009 – 3rd position

Delhi Daredevils in IPL 2009

Delhi Daredevils in IPL 2009

Delhi Daredevils came into the IPL 2009 in South Africa being the favourites to win the competition, alongside top competitors such as Mumbai Indians and Chennai Super Kings. It is because of the fine balance they possessed of Indian and foreign players, and many of them seemed to have the experience of having played in South African conditions in the past and so they would adapt quickly to them.

The team proved why they deserved to be called favourites as they thrashed another team which ended as the semifinalists the last season, Kings XI Punjab by 10 wickets in their first match at Newlands, Cape Town as the D/L method this time supported them and Daniel Vettori won the man of the match award for a magnificent spell of 3/15 in 4 overs. They went to beat the finalists last time, Chennai Super Kings by a narrow margin of 9 runs as the day was saved by the home boy AB de Villiers’ unbeaten 105 as his was the first century by any batsman in the IPL 2009.

The Royal Challengers Bangalore were also duly beaten by 6 wickets, maintaining their unbeaten record against them in the competition. Incidentally, it was Tillakratne Dilshan who won the man of the match award for his 67, who is now a Bangalore player. Their first loss in the tournament came against their nemesis team and the defending champions Rajasthan Royals at the Supersport Park, Centurion as they lost by 5 wickets. But at the same ground in the following game, they prevailed against the Deccan Chargers by 6 wickets as Dirk Nannes bowled a tidy spell of 2/16 in 4 overs.

Another hiccup they faced was losing to Chennai Super Kings in the return clash at Johannesburg by 18 runs. But then the team pulled off a winning streak of four matches, defeating the completely out of order Kolkata Knight Riders twice in a span of five days as ironically the current Kolkata captain, Gautam Gambhir won the man of the match award for his 71 not out off 57 balls in the run chase at Kingsmead in Durban, while in the second encounter at The Wanderers in Johannesburg, it was again the emerging Amit Mishra who took the game away from the opposition with a miserly spell of 3/14 in 4 overs. Delhi chased successfully in both the games.

Mumbai Indians were given a proper thumping at East London, as the Daredevils won by 7 wickets and the team’s won a clean sweep against the Deccan Chargers, winning all the four matches they played against them in the IPL at that stage with another 12 run win but this time it was Rajat Bhatia who stole the limelight with 4/15 in a span of just 2.4 overs.

They came second best against the Kings XI Punjab at Bloemfontein, losing by a 6 wicket margin but at the same venue, they fought back to defeat the Rajasthan Royals finally, by 14 runs as AB de Villiers won his second man of the match award in the IPL 2009 for his 79 not out off 55 balls. Although Royal Challengers Bangalore posted their first win ever against the Delhi Daredevils in their next match, it was déjà vu for Delhi as they defeated Mumbai Indians at Centurion in their final round robin match to qualify into the semifinals for the second consecutive year, ending as the No.1 team on the points table after the round robin stage.

Their semifinal opponents were the Deccan Chargers, which managed to make it to the last four but only just. Delhi were the overwhelming favourites to win this game and make it to the finals of the tournament. Sehwag won the toss and chose to bat first on a flat Centurion track. The team posted a good enough total which should have helped them advance in the competition, but Adam Gilchrist, the captain of the Deccan Chargers hit the fastest fifty in IPL history at the time, off just 17 balls.

His alongside Andrew Symonds’ blitzkrieg knocked Delhi out of the competition once again in the semifinals, which made many tag them as ‘chokers’ and the ‘South Africa of the IPL’ since they just did not know how to progress from the last four and were nervous at the time when they had to be at their best.

It was indeed a sad end for the Daredevils as they once again finished 3rd in the competition but their record was much better in South Africa, as they lost only 5 matches out of 15 unlike 2008 where they lost in 7 out of the 15 games.

Delhi Daredevils in the Champions League T20 2009

By the virtue of their IPL performance in South Africa, Delhi Daredevils somehow managed to qualify for the first ever Champions League T20 the very same year in India, ahead of the Chennai Super Kings. The other two teams participating in the competition were the champions of that season, Deccan Chargers and the finalists Royal Challengers Bangalore.

Delhi Daredevils were grouped alongside the Wayamba Eleven from Sri Lanka and Victoria Bushrangers from Australia. Their victory against Wayamba was adequate enough to help them qualify for the next stage of the competition where Delhi and Victoria were pitted against Bangalore and Cape Cobras.

In their first clash against the Royal Challengers Bangalore which was an extension of their IPL rivalry, Bangalore prevailed on their home ground with runs from the young and emerging opening batsman Manish Pandey. Whereas in the second clash, they prevailed against South Africa’s T20 champions Cape Cobras in a low scoring thriller at the Feroz Shah Kotla.

But a 2-2 record in 4 matches was not sufficient to help them advance to the semifinals, which ended their campaign and it was not a successful start to Gautam Gambhir’s captaincy for the Delhi Daredevils, as Virender Sehwag surprisingly quit the post prior to the tournament.

Delhi Daredevils in 2010 – 5th position

The year 2010 was Gambhir’s first as the captain of his home team in IPL cricket. There was a renewed hope that this time the team would make it to the finals, if not win the competition. The team gave away Manoj Tiwary and Owais Shah to the Kolkata Knight Riders prior to the season and bought the Australian all-rounder Moises Henriques, while also buying out the contract of Glenn McGrath, who did not shockingly play a single match in the IPL 2009 despite being available and 100% fit the whole season.

The season began in grand fashion yet again for the team as they beat the Kings XI Punjab in Mohali in their opening encounter by 8 wickets as Gambhir played a captain’s knock, scoring a 54-ball 72 and consequently, winning the man of the match award.  The following match was also theirs, as Rajasthan Royals were comprehensively hammered in Ahmedabad by 6 wickets as Virender Sehwag seemed to bat more freely with no leadership burden on his head, hitting a ruthless 75 off just 34 balls in another successful run chase.

But then the team became ‘inconsistent’, a term which was rarely associated with the Delhi Daredevils back then in the round robin stages of an IPL competition. They lost at the Feroz Shah Kotla, their so called ‘fortress’ to the Mumbai Indians by 98 runs as they could not stop Sachin Tendulkar’s onslaught. Followed by which they went to be on the losing side at home for the second consecutive time, as the Chennai Super Kings prevailed by 5 wickets with Matthew Hayden’s mongoose bat doing wonder in this game.

Deccan Chargers then went on to post their second win against the Daredevils, this time at one of their ‘home’ grounds, Cuttack by just 10 runs. But then the team won four matches in a row, which included a crucial away victory against the Royal Challengers Bangalore as the debutant Kedar Jadhav hit a half century off only 29 balls. While they posted a hat-trick of victories on the slow pitches at home, beating Kolkata by 40 runs courtesy David Warner’s explosive 107 off 69 balls.

Then Dinesh Karthik’s 38-ball 69 proved to be the ultimate difference between the team and the Rajasthan Royals as the Royals were beaten by a huge 67 run margin. Followed by which Bangalore suffered a 37 run defeat courtesy Paul Collingwood’s innings of 75, taking revenge of what happened in Bangalore a few days ago.

The Daredevils however, lost two away games in Kolkata and Mumbai and a home game against the bottom ranked Kings XI Punjab team, for which Delhi was criticized to be ‘complacent’ in their approach as the Punjab leggie Piyush Chawla easily rattled the powerful Delhi batting line-up. They seemed to however regain their confidence with a crucial 6 wicket win in Chennai as Gambhir proved to be the most valuable player for the team yet again.

But their hopes of making a hat-trick of semifinals in the IPL were dashed with a defeat in the last game to the Deccan Chargers at home, by 11 runs which made them finished 5th in the competition and narrowly missing out on the fourth position to the Royal Challengers Bangalore due to a poor net run rate, ending with a 50% win record in 14 matches having won 7 and lost 7 of them.

Delhi Daredevils in 2011 – 10th position

The Delhi team management seemed to have been carried away by their team’s not so bad performances in the first three seasons, and so their focus was somewhere else when they were bidding in the auction. They only retained Virender Sehwag out of all their quality players and made him the captain of the team yet again, while they fortunately managed to buy back David Warner and Umesh Yadav into the team. But Irfan Pathan being picked for $ USD 1.9 million was a huge gamble, as the team has relied on his emergence not to have a standby date. They picked group of players which are not big names but hopefuls of doing well in T20s, such as the Australian quartet of James Hopes, Travis Birt, Aaron Finch and Matthew Wade. They also went on to buy the now out of favour Venugopala Rao from the Deccan Chargers, young wicketkeeper batsman Naman Ojha from Rajasthan Royals and the Indian bowling trio of Ashok Dinda, Ajit Agarkar and Varun Aaron all of whom had earlier played for Kolkata Knight Riders. The South African trio of Roelef van der Merwe, Morne Morkel and Colin Ingram were also contracted.

This Delhi team was unpredictable and not as powerful as in 2008-2010. And the season started off in dismal fashion, losing a home game to the Mumbai Indians by 8 wickets as well as an away game to the Rajasthan Royals by 6 wickets. The Daredevils barely managed to pull off a victory against the new team; Pune Warriors India in their home of Navi Mumbai, winning the game in the final over despite Yuvraj Singh’s outstanding all round performance. But in the next four matches at home, they lost three of them, to Deccan, Kolkata and Bangalore respectively and prevailed against the Kings XI Punjab by 29 runs courtesy David Warner’s fifty.

Their following two matches were against the other nascent team, Kochi Tuskers Kerala and they won the encounter in Kochi by 38 runs as Sehwag played perhaps one of the finest innings in IPL cricket, hitting a 47-ball 80 in overcast conditions and a wicket which was a pure greentop. They lost the home game to Kochi by 7 wickets.

Sehwag once again proved that this Delhi team is a ‘one-man army’ and not the ‘team’ which it was in the past, as the rest completely relied on him to win as many matches as possible. It was due to his 56-ball 119 that Delhi chased down a target of 170 against the Deccan Chargers in Hyderabad, when they had lost 5 wickets in 7 overs and had a poor run rate.

They went to finish second best in their next three matches, which were away games incidentally and they were given a walloping by the Mumbai Indians, Chennai Super Kings and the Kings XI Punjab. Their last match was scheduled to be against the equally out of form Pune Warriors India at home, but was washed out due to rain.

Delhi Daredevils deserved to finish at the bottom of the points table, with just 4 wins in 14 matches, losing 9 of them more importantly.

Delhi Daredevils and the team in 2012

The team management seemed to have learnt from their mistakes the previous season and identified the loopholes which made them finish bottom-ranked. Hence, outside the auction they managed to buy one of the finest batsmen in T20 cricket at the moment, England’s Kevin Pietersen from the Deccan Chargers for $USD 1 million. Whereas, during the IPL player auction, they managed to grab some biggies in the form of current Sri Lankan captain Mahela Jayawardene for a colossal sum of $USD 1.4 million as well as West Indies’ athletic and rookie all-rounder Andre Russell for $450,000. And they ended it all with the purchase of New Zealand’s current sensation, Doug Bracewell for his base price of $USD 50,000.

Here is a look at some of the players who are likely to make a huge impact if the team has to change their fortunes this season –

1) Virender Sehwag (India)

He is not just the leader, but the soul of the team as it is due to him now that the Delhi Daredevils is still recognized. The Nawab of Najafgarh was born in the city on October 20, 1978 and has grown to become one of the greatest opening batsmen of all time irrespective of the format of the game he is playing in, with his aggressive style of batting now being a benchmark for openers these days. He has the honour of belonging to the quartet of players to have scored two triple hundreds in Test cricket and hitting the highest individual score in one-day cricket which is 219 against the West Indies in 2011.

In IPL cricket, he averages 29.44 in 50 matches, having hit 1384 runs but more importantly at a strike rate of 169.60. Sehwag’s presence, let alone his batting would definitely be a huge morale booster to this team.

2) David Warner (Australia)

Warner seems to be on seventh heaven these days. Born on October 27, 1986 in the area of Paddington in Sydney, he made his Test debut for Australia in December last year while he had already become a national sensation on his ODI and T-20 debuts back in 2009. His batting style makes him look like a mix of the left-handed version of Sehwag and Adam Gilchrist.

He is currently Australia’s vice captain in ODIs and T20s and the captain of Sydney Thunder in the Big Bash in Australia. Being one of the most explosive T20 batsmen in the world, his opening partnership with Sehwag will hold the key in the team’s success. He possesses a strike rate of 128.38 in IPL cricket, having hit one century in it as well.

3) Kevin Pietersen (England)

He may be tall and brash, but when KP times the ball sweetly, it is a glorious sight to watch. He was born on June 27, 1980 in Pietermaritzburg in South Africa and migrated to England to get a shot in international cricket. He is credited as many as a ‘great’ batsman for his three hundreds in seven matches in his ODI debut series against South Africa as well as leading the way for England to win the World T20 in the West Indies in 2010 with consistent batting performances.

In India, he is known as the England captain who bravely led his team in the Test match series against India in late 2008 after the bomb blasts in Mumbai as well as being friends with the Mallya family, under whom he was contracted earlier in the IPL for the Bangalore team and being a brand ambassador for one of their products till date. He is likely to bat at No.3 for the Delhi Daredevils and depending on his availability, he should be an automatic choice as a foreign player in the playing XI.

4) Roelef van der Merwe (South Africa)

Van der Merwe made a name for him first, having turned for the Royal Challengers Bangalore in the IPL alongside Kevin Pietersen in 2009 and 2010. The South African all-rounder was born in Johannesburg on December 31, 1984 and has since then also played for the Somerset Sabres in English county cricket. In the last year’s Champions League T20, he was the reason why Somerset beat the odds to make it to the semifinals, as his versatility to bat anywhere in the batting order and ofcourse his economical bowling figures make him a worthy contender for a place in the starting XI.

5) James Hopes (Australia)

James Hopes represented Kings XI Punjab in the first three years of the IPL. Born on October 24, 1978 in Townsville, Queensland, Hopes is known however for his massive exploits in Australian cricket, having played for Queensland. He is a hard hitting batsman and a medium pace bowler, who is like van der Merwe capable of batting in the top or the lower order and a good bowling option to have if the team is in trouble. Delhi has to make good use of him; while he would ‘hope’ that he betters his record in Indian conditions.

6)  Matthew Wade (Australia)

The Tasmanian-born Victoria wicketkeeper-batsman is the latest cricketer to be in the Australian headlines frequently. Since the last 12 months, his performances in all forms of domestic cricket have been consistent, so much so that now he seems to have cemented his place in the Australian one-day team as the first choice wicketkeeper and many rate him over the more experienced Brad Haddin and wish that he takes over the mantle in Test cricket also.

He proved his worth to the Indian fans recently in the T20 internationals against India in Australia. Wade would be a decent option, in case Pietersen or Mahela Jayawardene become unavailable at some point of time in the tournament but he is definitely a better option than the young Naman Ojha.

Delhi Daredevils and controversies

Delhi Daredevils Cheerleaders

Delhi Daredevils Cheerleaders

Delhi Daredevils is one of the few ‘squeaky clean’ teams of the tournament, as they do not seem to be hungry for publicity and so have had no major controversies to their credit as such, that they had to face in the four years of their existence.

Although in 2008, it was after their semifinal in the IPL that they faced a big controversy. Mohammad Asif, the Pakistani fast bowler who has now been jailed in England for spot fixing was caught with drugs which are not prohibited for personal use in his travelling kit, upon his arrival in the UAE. Now, he has been banned from entering that country but more importantly this gave Delhi Daredevils negative media coverage as it was suspected that Asif did not play the game fairly and the team management was not vigilant enough in determining Asif’s behavior and performances throughout the season.

Then ofcourse the issue of Pakistani players not playing in the IPL took centrestage, as Delhi had contracted Asif and former captain of the national side, Shoaib Malik from 2008 to 2010. Kolkata was the only other team to have more than one player from Pakistan in their roster for the first three seasons.

In 2009, even though out of form, Virender Sehwag was injured after playing the IPL in South Africa and hence did not take part in the World T20 championship which followed, in England. Sehwag was the key in India’s chances of defending the title that they had painstakingly won in 2007, but the team failed to do so as they were knocked out of the Super 8s stage itself, as Rohit Sharma had to be promoted to open the batting. While Gautam Gambhir also seemed to be miserably out of form in the World Cup, which did not help India’s cause at all.

There was a similar story for Sehwag in 2010 and 2011 as due to the tournament, he had to sit out for the World T20 in 2010 which was in the West Indies and the fate was the Indian team was destined, as the tournament progressed. Once again, they were knocked out in the Super 8s. And in 2011, he missed the tour of the West Indies and featured in just one Test match on the ‘winless’ tour of England, until he was sent back home again on the grounds of poor fitness.

Although Delhi Daredevils cannot be blamed as Sehwag is not a child who should get injured time and again while playing loads of cricket. But the team management is said to put too much pressure on Sehwag to fire, since he is the team’s star player. This perhaps explains why they are not willing to follow a rotation policy, which could involve ‘resting’ Sehwag for a minimum of 5 matches out of 14 in the competition. They could apply this in the upcoming season as Mahela Jayawardene is a suitable option for opening the batting with David Warner and captaining the team as well, since his leadership skills with Sri Lanka have been seen and they have been excellent so far. And another young Indian player could be given an opportunity to prove his worth in the absence of Sehwag.

In 2010, Gautam Gambhir was criticized by many for his so-called ‘derogatory’ comments about the performance of the opposition, Rajasthan Royals in the post match presentation of one of the round robin matches in Delhi. Although he was being honest in his opinion as indeed it was only Yusuf Pathan who gave Delhi a tough fight, yet it was not received well by Rajasthan captain Shane Warne and the IPL governing council which reprimanded him for the same. It also bought up the debate of how truthful a captain has to be in his opinions in the game of cricket.

Delhi Daredevils was also criticized for only retaining Virender Sehwag from the first three seasons and putting the rest up for auction, which included top class international players in T20 cricket such as AB de Villiers, Tillakratne Dilshan, Daniel Vettori and Paul Collingwood. Some of their player selections in the 2011 IPL auction also came under scrutiny, which involved buying Irfan Pathan for as much as $USD 1.9 million and bowlers such as Ashok Dinda and Ajit Agarkar, both of whom in combination could not help make Kolkata a successful team in the first three seasons. This was the reason given by many as to why they finished 10th in the last year’s competition, out of 10 teams.

Some interesting facts about Delhi Daredevils

1)    Delhi Daredevils made it to the last four in the first two seasons of the IPL, incidentally finishing at the 3rd spot since the team which beat them in the semifinals, went on to win the tournament.

2)    Virender Sehwag has captained the team in three of the four seasons it has played in the IPL, i.e., 2008, 2009 and 2011. Gautam Gambhir was the captain in 2010, since Sehwag resigned from the post then.

3)    Virender Sehwag is also the highest run getter of all time for the Delhi Daredevils with 1518 runs in 53 matches, averaging 30.36 with the highest score of his being 119 till date, which was scored in the 2011 season. Besides, he has a colossal strike rate of 168.29. Amazing numbers indeed!

4)    Amit Mishra is the highest wicket-taker of all time for the Delhi Daredevils with 46 wickets in 35 matches, averaging 20.02 with best bowling figures of 5/17.

5)    Virender Sehwag, David Warner and Umesh Yadav are the only three players who have represented the team since the last four seasons.

6)    Paul Collingwood, who represented the Delhi Daredevils in 2009 and 2010, was the captain of the England team that went on to win the World T20 in the Caribbean in May 2010, approximately a month and a half after the termination of the IPL 2010.

7)    South Africa’s Eric Simons, the bowling coach of the Delhi Daredevils is also India’s current bowling coach, having played a huge role in India’s 2011 World Cup victory.

8)    Australia’s Greg Shipperd, the head coach of the team also coaches Victoria in Australian domestic cricket.

9)    Ajit Agarkar had the world record of picking 50 wickets as in the least number of one-day matches than any other bowler, until Sri Lanka’s Ajantha Mendis broke his record.

10) Mahela Jayawardene has scored a century each in all three formats of the game, i.e. Tests, ODIs and T-20 internationals.

11) The trio of Mahela Jayawardene, Irfan Pathan and James Hopes had played together for the Kings XI Punjab in the first three seasons of the tournament.

12) Kevin Pietersen is the second highest run-getter in T-20 internationals, with an aggregate of 1064 runs in 33 games.

13) David Warner is the highest run getter for Australia in T-20 internationals.

14) Warner also possesses the record of scoring the fourth fastest century in Test cricket, which came against India in Perth in 2012.

15) Colin Ingram has the honour of being the first South African player to score a century on ODI debut and the sixth overall in ODI cricket.

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