Before the IPL mega auctions earlier this year, all the previous eight franchises had announced a list of retained players while newbies Lucknow Super Giants and Gujarat Titans announced their top three picks. There were a few surprises such as Yuzvendra Chahal, who parted ways with Royal Challengers Bangalore after a seven-year illustrious spell with the franchise. IPL 2022 Coverage
David Warner, meanwhile, left Sunrisers Hyderabad after a fruitful stint with the ‘Orange Army’. He was captain of Hyderabad from 2015 to much of the 2021 season, establishing himself as one of the most prolific run-scorers in the IPL and leading them to their only title in 2016.
However, the Australian opener was sacked as captain after a fall-out with the team management in the 2021 IPL edition. Warner was eventually snapped up by the Delhi Capitals, with whom he had started his IPL career before joining the Hyderabad-based outfit. In IPL 2021, Warner scored just 195 runs at an average of 24.37 and strike rate of 107.73
Former India opener Virender Sehwag believes releasing Warner was Hyderabad’s ‘biggest mistake’ and the team management should have reconciled with their captain instead of letting him go. Sehwag, who shared the dressing room with Warner during his time at Capitals (formerly the Daredevils), further underlined the Australian’s ability to play according to the situation.
“Releasing David Warner has been Sunrisers Hyderabad’s biggest mistake. They should never have let him go, irrespective of what happened. If an Indian captain makes a statement, the selectors don’t remove him or sack him. SRH management should have backed Warner, which they did not do. If they had, he would still have been with the franchise,” Sehwag told Cricbuzz.
“Anyone can have a poor season. Virat Kohli only recently scored that fifty, otherwise, his season has been really bad. That doesn’t mean Bangalore must release him,” he further added.
“Warner has modified his game. He plays according to the situation. He started with attacking cricket but now he is controlling the game as well and tries to stay till the end, which is a sign of a very good player.”
In a fresh spell with Delhi, Warner has so far amassed 427 runs in 11 games including five half-centuries. He will play a crucial role at the top when his team faces Mumbai Indians on Saturday. For securing a playoff spot, the Capitals (0.255) need to beat Mumbai Indians to pip Royal Challengers Bangalore (-0.253) on a better net run rate.