In the IPL this season, Sunrisers were initially led by Sri Lanka’s Kumar Sangakkara but he was later replaced by Australia’s Cameron White. While Sangakkara has chosen to play for Sri Lankan outfit Kandurata Maroons in the Champions League, White remains in the Sunrisers squad for the tournament.
Dhawan, who has captained Delhi in the past, was eager to get cracking in the new role. “I have captained the Delhi team for a while now but this is a new challenge. It’s an honour to lead a team like the Sunrisers because it has some big players, and I am really looking forward to it.”
Tom Moody, the head coach of Sunrisers, believes Dhawan was the right appointment. “Having excelled in the Indian team over the recent past, Shikhar has dominated as a batsman and has been more than consistent,” Moody said. “He is a complete package as a player and is considered a real team man. That’s why we have decided to elevate him and make him our new captain.”
Dhawan heads into the three-week long tournament on the back of a series of consistent performances including a Man-of-the-Series display in the Champions Trophy where he scored a tournament-leading 363 runs, and a record-breaking 248 for the A team against South Africa A in Pretoria.
“Shikhar is ready to take on this honour and has shown great leadership qualities in the past,” Moody said. “His recent experiences on the international stage and now the captaincy role will only enhance his reputation as a top-grade cricketer.”
Sunrisers will begin their CLT20 campaign with their first qualifying match on Tuesday, incidentally against Kandurata.