New Delhi: The two-time champion Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) were unable to make it to the playoffs due to the IPL’s low net run rate last season, but this season they will fully put the focus to get to the playoffs. Last season for Kolkata, Sunil Narine and Andre Russell of the West Indies failed to perform as expected.
Shakib Al Hasan will have a trump card
The Kolkata squad has the versatile Bangladesh Shakib Al Hasan, who can replace Naren in the squad. Shakib can help make a big score by hitting fast in the middle order. If Andre Russell fails, Kolkata has batsmen like Dinesh Karthik and Captain Eoin Morgan, who can prove dangerous to any team bowler in death overs.
Shubman Gill is also in good shape
Nitish Rana landed as an opener last season and he’s expected to be in the same role this season. Kolkata also has Shubman Gill, who has done well recently. Besides the bat, Shakib can also come in handy for the team with the ball, especially the MA from Chennai. It can prove crucial during the opener at Chidambaram Stadium where the spinners get some help.
Cummins has a deadly bowler on the team
Australian fast bowler Pat Cummins will lead the front with young bowler Krishna. Apart from these, Russell is also an option in fast bowling. New Zealand fast bowler Lockie Ferguson may also be an option compared to Kolkata in Mumbai and Bengaluru. Team assistant coach Abhishek Nair said our team is a balanced team. I think we have to make sure that all the players are in the right frame so that they can perform well in the tournament.
The Kolkata team is as follows:
Shubman Gill, Nitish Rana, Tim Seifert (wicket keeper), Rahul Tripathi, Rinku Singh, Dinesh Karthik (wicket keeper), Eoin Morgan (captain), Andre Russell, Sunil Naren, Varun CV, Kuldeep Yadav, Pat Cummins, Lockie Ferguson, Kamlesh Nagerkoti, Shivam Mavi, Sandeep Warrier, Famous Krishna, Shakib Al Hasan, Sheldon Jackson, Vaibhav Arora, Karun Nair, Harbhajan Singh, Ben Cutting, Venkatesh Iyer and Pawan Negi.