While the top fours teams of this years IPL are still toiling hard against sides from all over the world in the Champions League T20 Delhi Daredevils the franchise that finished at the bottom in the May event,have already started conceiving their plans for the next season of the IPL. With more than six months left for the IPL,Delhi Daredevils have already started work for the next edition. They planned a clandestine five day camp at the Jamia Milia Islamia University grounds touted as their pre-season preparations. Bowling specialist Eric Simons,who has according to sources taken over as the head coach in place of Greg Shepherd along with TA Sekhar,expressed concern over his teams downhill trudge in the 10-team competition and said that he did not want that the situation pans out in a similar way as it did last season for the Daredevils.
It isnt that we lacked on talent but strategy played the key part. Somewhere down the line,we faltered in execution. Daredevils has always generated good support but we failed to give them the result. I think we need to learn a lot by the challenges thrown to us by other teams. We have learnt our lessons and this is a move to iron out flaws and see what works better for the team, Simons told Sportline.
Playing at the newly refurbished Jamia Sports Complex under the glimmering white light,Daredevils were divided in teams and made to play against each other. Despite an attempt to keep the session under wraps,they couldnt prevent the stands from being packed with university students giving it more or less an ambience that the city side is accustomed to play in during IPL. And besides all the experienced campaigners in Irfan Pathan,Naman Ojha,Ashoke Dinda,Avishkar Salvi,many young faces were tapped from different parts of the country.
On being asked the reason for this development,Simons said,It is important to have a strong bench strength. Last year we tapped uncapped foreigners but then realised that it wasnt those four foreigners who were winning you the match but seven Indians. So further on that realisation,we decided to select the best out of the domestic talent.
With the Ranji Trophy just weeks away,Pathan and Salvi felt it was a good session ahead of the domestic season,and in their attempt to get back to the mainstream fold. These camps always provide you competitive cricket. Moreover,it is raining in Mumbai and we are handicapped. So it is better here that we are getting quality practice, Salvi said.
For the new players,the entire session was like a trial. They were expected to showcase their T20 abilities in order to be in the list of 30 players. Among the youngsters was Delhis Milind Kumar who got a call from the franchise. By that time he was also busy with his Ranji camp but managed both. He was put in one of the teams for the last match and played a sweet cameo of 25 runs going in at number 5. I enjoyed the camp. To be with all the senior cricketers motivates you and pushes you to keep performing. It was a trial for me and the way I did was satisfactory. But they made sure that our performance in the domestic season will be the only deciding factor for selection, said Milind who plays in the U-22 category for Delhi.
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