Zaheer Khan to lead Delhi Daredevils in IPL 2016

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New Delhi, March 28 (IANS) Former India pacer Zaheer Khan was on Monday named the captain of Delhi Dardevils for the 2016 Indian Premier League (IPL) cricket tournament.

It will be Zaheer’s second successive season as a player with the Dardevils franchise. The left-armer will take over captaincy from South African all-rounder J.P. Duminy. The ninth edition of the IPL will be held from April 9 to May 29.

Speaking about the appointment, the team’s mentor Rahul Dravid said in a statement: “Zaheer has been a leader for a very long time. Anyone who has followed Indian cricket will know the impact Zak has had. He has always proven himself to be one of the leaders.”

“Zak has a big personality, but it is the steel, focus and drive behind the outward confidence which I think he will bring to the captaincy. And that, I am sure, will inspire the rest of the team.”

“He has the respect of the dressing room and the franchise is proud to have him as our captain. I would like to congratulate him on the appointment and wish him, and the rest of the squad all the very best.”

Zaheer retired last year from international cricket, after playing 92 Tests and scalping 311 wickets. He also claimed 282 One-Day wickets in 200 matches and appeared in 17 T20 Internationals, taking as many wickets.

Zaheer was delighted with his new role. “It is a huge honour to captain Delhi Daredevils. To get this responsibility is a way for me to give back to the game.”

“I firmly believe that with the players currently involved we have the makings of a very good side, a young side that can surprise people. The potential of this group of players is immense and it is now up to us as players to turn that potential into consistent performances,” the 37-year-old added.

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