Winless and rock-bottom of the Pepsi IPL table after four games, Delhi Daredevils faces the unenviable task of playing Royal Challengers Bangalore, Chennai Super Kings and Mumbai Indians in the space of six days.
It is a series of fixtures that could easily leave Delhi without a realistic chance of making the play-offs. Coach Eric Simons acknowledges the gravity of the situation.
“Every game we go into now is going to be a must-win in some shape or form; we accept that,” he told the press at the M. Chinnaswamy Stadium here, on the eve of Delhi’s clash with RCB.
“We’ve got RCB, CSK and MI — those are three tough games and we need to come away from them with two wins at least.”
Delhi’s form this season is in stark contrast to its achievements last time, when it finished on top of the league table. “Last year we started like a house on fire and then tapered off; hopefully it’s the other way around this year,” Simons said.
“If you take three important players out of any team — we lost Kevin (Pietersen), and lost Viru (Sehwag) and Morne (Morkel) for the first two or three games — it makes a massive difference.”
RCB, for its part, may be one of the form teams this season but has suffered two painful last-over defeats (one in a Super Over).
The side’s West Indian seamer Ravi Rampaul admitted that bowling in the ‘death’ was a concern. “We have definitely been having some problems in the death overs,” he said. “The execution did not go all that well. So it is something that we need to work on.”
Rampaul added, however, that the team had moved on from Saturday’s loss at Chennai.