Rishabh Pant is set to play in his first Indian Premier League (IPL) season as captain for the Delhi Capitals. Shreyas Iyer injured his shoulder during the T20I series against England and was ruled out of the T20 extravaganza. Pant is set to start his IPL captaincy campaign against idol MS Dhoni on April 10.
Many cricket experts are looking forward to Pant leading the Delhi Capitals and it will be interesting to see if he can actually lead them to their first title. However, former India cricketer Kapil Dev believes it will be tough for the youngster as it is only his first season at the helm. He also reckoned that DC have around only a 25% chance of winning the IPL this year.
"Yes, there may be 25-26% chances (of Pant winning the IPL for DC), I don't think anything more than that because then you're saying he's better than the other teams (captains). He's a new captain, he needs a lot of experience. But it's a bit difficult to go all the way (in his first attempt as captain)," Kapil Dev said while speaking to ABP News.
Senior players' support will be important for Pant
Kapil Dev also felt that a lot will depend on how the senior players in the DC side will support Rishabh Pant during the tournament. Pant will be leading the likes of Steve Smith, Shikhar Dhawan, Ravi Ashwin who are very much senior to him and it won't be easy at all for the 23-year-old.
"If senior players support him then it won't be that difficult for him. I had a similar experience of becoming a Captain at such a young age. Ricky Ponting can control the game only in the dressing room. Once the team is out on the ground, it's the captain's thought process that matters more.
"And experienced players like Rahane and Dhawan Will have to support the young captain. Sometimes the support is missing and we have to wait for the first few matches to get there," India's first World Cup-winning captain further added.