“Gautam Gambhir asked me to open”: Sunil Narine credits former KKR captain Gautam Gambhir for opening in IPL

Rishikesh Sharma
|Published August 01, 2022

West Indian spinner Sunil Narine has credited former KKR captain Gautam Gambhir for giving him the chance to open for KKR.

West Indian all-rounder Sunil Narine is one of the most prolific T20 players around the world. He has established his name as one of the best spinners of the game, whereas batting has been a huge plus for him as well.

The veteran of 419 T20 games, Narine has scalped 452 wickets at an economy of 6.02, whereas he has also scored 3196 runs with the bat, courtesy of 13 half-centuries. He has played T20 leagues all around the world.

Narine has been a tremendous T20 bowler, but his heroics with the bat has also made him a star package in the T20s. The southpaw is famous for giving his team aggressive starts at the top. He first opened for Melbourne Renegades in the BBL, followed by KKR in the Indian Premier League.

Sunil Narine credits Gautam Gambhir for opening chance

Narine revealed that it was Gautam Gambhir’s idea to make him open for the KKR. He said that Gambhir asked him to give a fast start to the team forgetting about the fear of losing his wicket.

“Gautam Gambhir asked me to open. He wanted me to get the team off to a fast start, it didn’t matter if I lost my wicket early,” Sunil Narine said in EspnCricinfo’s cricket monthly.

“The more I performed well, the more confidence KKR had in me and gave me that encouragement.”

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Narine has opened in 39 innings for the Kolkata Knight Riders, where he has managed to score 728 runs at an average of 18.69. The main point is his S/R, which is 175.66. His job was to give quick starts, and he delivered in that aspect. In 2016, Narine scored 54 runs in just 17 balls, where he scored a 14-ball half-century.

After his brilliant performances, he became a regular opener in the T20 leagues around the world. In 2022, Narine scored a half-century in just 13 balls in the Bangladesh Premier League match between Comilla Victorians and Chattogram Challengers. This is the 2nd fastest fifty in the history of T20 cricket.

In overall T20s, Narine has scored 1895 T20 runs at 17.87, courtesy of ten half-centuries. He has a smashing strike-rate of 155.58 as an opener in the T20s.

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About the author

Rishikesh Sharma

Rishikesh Sharma

An engineering graduate and an ardent Sports fan. Rishikesh Sharma is writing about cricket for 3 years now as corporate life didn't suit him. Sourav Ganguly made him fall in love with the game, and players like Brendon McCullum and Gautam Gambhir enhanced it. Apart from cricket, Rishikesh is a huge fan of Liverpool FC. When not watching sports, you will find him riding around Jaipur.

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