Wicketkeeper-batsman Rishabh Pant has been named captain of the Delhi Capitals for the 2021 Indian Premier League.
Pant has replaced regular captain Shreyas Iyer, who has been ruled out of the tournament due to a shoulder injury sustained during India's recent ODI series against England.
Fifth-Youngest IPL Captain
At 23 years old, Pant will become the fifth-youngest captain in the history of the IPL, after Iyer and fellow Indians Virat Kohli, Suresh Raina – and Australian Steven Smith.
“Delhi is where I grew up, and where my IPL journey began six years ago. To lead this team one day is a dream I've always harboured. And today, as that dream comes true, I feel humbled,” said Pant.
Iyer added: “I had no doubt that Rishabh would be the best man for the job.”
Praise from Ponting
Head coach Ricky Ponting and franchise co-owners Kiran Kumar Grandhi and Parth Jindal made the collective decision to appoint Pant.
“The previous two seasons under Shreyas' leadership have been incredible, and the results speak for themselves,” said Ponting.
“This is a tremendous opportunity for young Rishabh, who is coming off successful stints against Australia and England which will no doubt give him the confidence needed to take on a new role that comes with a lot more responsibility.”
South African fast bowlers Kagiso Rabada and Anrich Nortje, Australian all-rounders Daniel Sams and Marcus Stoinis, West Indian batsman Shimron Hetmyer and England seamer Chris Woakes are among the players retained by Delhi for this season.
They have also added England duo Tom Curran and Sam Billings.
The Delhi franchise, who were the Daredevils before becoming the Capitals, have never won the IPL. They lost the 2020 final to the Mumbai Indians.
The IPL will return to India this year. It will start on 9 April, when Mumbai play Bangalore in Chennai. The competition was played in the United Arab Emirates last year.
Mumbai are the most successful IPL franchise, with five titles. The Chennai Super Kings have won the tournament three times. The Kolkata Knight Riders have won it twice. The Rajasthan Royals and Sunrisers Hyderabad have one title each.