‘A really surprised’ Gautam Gambhir could not fathom the reasons behind Rajasthan Royals’ decision to drop Chris Morris and Evin Lewis for their important IPL 2021 encounter against Delhi Capitals in Abu Dhabi on Saturday.
The Royals captain Sanju Samson won the toss and opted to field first but the real surprise came when he revealed the changes. South Africa’s left-arm wrist spinner Tabraiz Shamsi came in for all-rounder Chris Morris and middle-order batsman David Miller replaced opener Evin Lewis.
Samson did not delve too much into the reasons for the two overseas cricketers’ ‘unavailability’ at the toss.
“Hoping the wicket gets better as the day goes on. It was a great team effort from everyone but it’s history. Two people not available – Evin Lewis and Chris Morris miss out, and that means Tabraiz Shamsi and David Miller come in. We might have Livingstone coming up the order,” Samson said.
Gambhir, however, indicated that both Morris and Lewis might have been injured otherwise Rajasthan Royals’ decision to drop them both against Delhi Capitals is a really surprising one.
“It really surprised me. Rajasthan Royals need to win games. Don’t know what could be the reason, maybe it is the injuries. Morris is their biggest recruit. But yeah, Morris is not playing. Lewis is not playing. who is going to replace them (if they are injured), it’s a question mark,” Gambhir said on Star Sports.
Both Morris and Lewis featured in Royals’ first match against the Punjab Kings which they won by 2 runs. Morris is the most expensive player picked in an IPL auction. RR roped the South Africa all-rounder for a whopping 16.25 Cr.
West Indies opener Evin Lewis, meanwhile, was drafted into the RR squad as a replacement of Jos Buttler. Lewis had given a good start to the RR innings with opening partner Yashasvi Jaiswal against PBKS.
Meanwhile, the Delhi Capitals replaced the injured Marcus Stoinis with Lalit Yadav and decided to play with three overseas players.
Delhi Capitals XI: Rishabh Pant (c), Prithvi Shaw, Shikhar Dhawan, Shreyas Iyer, Lalit Yadav, Shimron Hetmyer, Axar Patel, Ravichandran Ashwin, Kagiso Rabada, Anrich Nortje and Avesh Khan.
Rajasthan Royals XI: Sanju Samson (c), Yashasvi Jaiswal, Liam Livingstone, David Miller, Mahipal Lomror, Riyan Parag, Rahul Tewatia, Kartik Tyagi, Chetan Sakariya, Mustafizur Rahman and Tabraiz Shamsi.