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IPL 2023: David Warner averages 52.66, but his strike rate of 117.04 is a big worry for DC

IPL 2023: David Warner averages 52.66, but his strike rate of 117.04 is a big worry for Delhi Capitals. David Warner has scored 6039 runs from 165 games in IPL at a strike rate of 139.95.

IPL 2023: David Warner averages 52.66, but his strike rate of 117.04 is a big worry for Delhi Capitals.    _ Walking wicket (Images_ ©IPL_Twitter)
David Warner's strike rate of 117.04 is a big worry for DC (Images: ©IPL/Twitter)

Delhi Capitals captain David Warner is currently the fifth-highest run-getter in IPL 2023, aggregating 158 runs in 3 innings at an average of 52.66. These figures convey that Warner is leading from the front, and that’s what is expected of a captain in a competitive tournament such as IPL. But hold on, incomplete figures do not tell the real picture all the time. Capitals have lost all their three games so far despite opener-cum-captain Warner “leading from the front”.


But leaving the result aside, what is harming Delhi more than anything else is Warner’s poor strike rate of 117.04. He has taken 135 balls to score those 158 runs. For an opener, who can make the most of the field restrictions in the powerplay, and get the opportunity to play the most overs if he anchors the innings, a strike rate of less than 120 does more harm than good. And Warner’s struggle to force the pace or accelerate is creating more pressure on the batters to follow as they have to take undue risks to improve the run rate.


Warner’s performance in each match in IPL 2023 so far

vs RR

vs GT

vs LSG

Total

Runs

65

37

56

158

Balls

55

32

48

135

Strike Rate

118.18

115.62

116.66

117.04

Hence, despite Warner topping the batting charts, his run-making at a poor strike rate of less than 120 is not helping his team at all.




IPL 2023_ David Warner to captain Delhi Capitals in Rishabh Pant's absence _ Walking Wicket (Images_ ©IPL_Twitter)
David Warner has over 6000 runs in IPL (Images: ©IPL/Twitter)

Probable reasons for David Warner’s slow avatar

There could be various reasons for Warner to play such an uncharacteristic game as he is known to unleash his full range of strokes as an opener, dominate the bowling attack and let the batters who follow continue the run-scoring momentum.


First, it could be Warner, who has been handed over the captaincy after Rishabh Pant was ruled out post a car accident, is facing undue pressure to lead Delhi Capitals, who have had success first with Shreyas Iyer and then with Pant. Although being out of IPL captaincy for a few seasons now, Warner has been shoved the leadership, and he might be feeling the pressure to guide Delhi to a successful IPL campaign.


Second, David Warner is playing the anchor role where he is holding one end up so that other experienced and hard-hitting batters in Mitchell Marsh and Rilee Rossouw can play their strokes freely and get the run-scoring momentum going. But both Marsh and Rossouw or even Manish Pandey have failed to get going, making Warner’s anchoring role more of a trouble for Delhi. Besides, Warner could be taking the anchor role on himself as there aren’t any players who could do this job to perfection. And hence, Warner has had to endure a poor strike rate of less than 120 so far in the hope other players will come to party while he accelerates at the end to improve his strike rate. But it has not happened so far as Warner has waged a lone battle.


Third, Warner has not been in top form recently. Since his double ton against South Africa at Melbourne in December last year, Warner has not been at his lethal best across formats. His struggles against both spin and pace have been apparent. He has had a poor Test series against India recently where he could manage just 26 runs in 3 innings, while he featured in just one ODI against India scoring 23 runs. So, despite 2 fifties in 3 innings in IPL 2023, Warner looks far from convincing as his poor strike rate is creating more pressure on the team rather than helping his mates.



Warner needs to step up

Delhi Capitals management, led by head coach Ricky Ponting, a former Aussie captain, should have a straightforward conversation with Warner to sort out his approach to batting so far, and even look to resolve any mindset issues that is preventing the left-handed opener from being the ruthless and aggressive batter he was earlier.


Warner is one of the most experienced batters in IPL, scoring over 6000 runs, and he has proved himself as an opener-cum-captain when he led SRH to an IPL title in 2016. So, Warner could repeat those heroics if he could sort out his strike-rate issues and starts dominating the bowling, and lets other batters to flourish in his company, giving the necessary momentum to the innings. Warner does not need to look further than IPL 2022 where he struck at a strike rate of 150.52, while scoring 432 runs in 12 matches with 5 fifty-plus scores.


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