Playing to win every match: Delhi Capitals’ Assistant Coach Mohammad Kaif
Delhi Capitals captain Shreyas Iyer, head coach Ricky Ponting and assistant coach Mohammad Kaif during a nets session.

Playing to win every match: Delhi Capitals’ Assistant Coach Mohammad Kaif

Pravin Dubey to replace Amit Mishra

New Delhi, October 20, 2020

Delhi Capitals’ Assistant Coach Mohammad Kaif has made it clear that his team has not lowered its guards and, despite winning seven of the nine matches in IPL so far, Shreyas Iyer's led side will go all out to win each of the remaining fixtures,

“We are aiming to take the two points in every match -- be it Punjab or any other team. We just want to maintain that winning habit in this tournament – that’s our challenge,” Kaif told Delhi Capitals' media cell in Dubai.

"To win a tournament like IPL, you have to be all-round performers. If you bat first, you have to put runs on the board, which we have been doing in this tournament. But if you bat second, you should be able to chase down the target,” he said.

“We are very happy at the moment because in the first game that we chased, we lost against SRH. We couldn’t chase their target of about 160, but against CSK it was good, because it was a tough task to chase,” he said.

According to Kaif, his side will like to keep the momentum going when they take on sixth-placed Kings XI Punjab here at the Dubai International Stadium on Tuesday.

"We’re not looking at the team in front of us and are just approaching the matches as they come," he said but admitted, “We were not chasing well so far in this tournament – we were a defending kind of team."

"Our bowlers have done well so far, but it was good to see Shikhar -- the way he batted, and he had been doing so well in the whole tournament, but was getting 20s, 30s every single game. So it was good to see him also getting his first hundred in the IPL,” Kaif said.

He was of the view that his side has improved with every game. "I can say that we have a squad which can set-up as well as chase totals," he said.

“That’s the strength of the team and we want to achieve that kind of target, you know, so that when we are put in to bowl first and chase a target, we should be able to do it.

"We have some experienced players in the squad and have good bench strength – of course we were a bit unlucky with some big injuries. But, overall, we have a squad to go all the way and so far we have done well,” he said.

Kaif opined that almost all the players who have played this season, have performed well and that is what his coaching staff has been trying to tell the players.

“That is something we speak about in the meetings or in the nets. Ricky (Ponting), of course, is very keen to have that mind-set – he speaks about a player making an impact whenever he gets a chance – he should win the game – and that’s what the players have done so far,” he said.

The assistant coach was further quoted as saying by the Delhi Capitals media release that “All the players have been fantastic for us, and it’s actually a great headache for the opponents. They would think how to plan against DC, who have got so many match winners in their squad – to really contain and beat us on the day."

“Coaches speak to the players, that now we have got the momentum, we don’t need to break it. That’s why when we try to pick and play our best team out of the players who are available,” he added

Meanwhile, Delhi Capitals today announced the signing of 27-year-old leg spinner Pravin Dubey as replacement for Amit Mishra, for the rest of the league.

The Karnataka-based Dubey has played 14 domestic T20 matches for his state, and has 16 wickets to his name, with an economy rate of 6.87.

Amit Mishra was ruled out the tournament after sustaining an injury to the ring finger of his bowling arm during Delhi Capitals’ match against Kolkata Knight Riders in Sharjah on 3rd October. The 37-year-old has undergone surgery, and is recovering at the moment.


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