KKR had a mixed IPL auction, as the two-time champions picked a squad with a good blend of experienced stars and promising youngsters in their ranks. But they did not buy a captain, which is why the franchise need to find someone who will lead KKR into the upcoming season.
For the last seven years, they had the brilliant Gautam Gambhir at their helm of the Kolkata franchise. Gambhir’s captaincy was key to KKR’s success over the years, as the Delhi batsman proved to be a wonderful leader for the side.
KKR spent a lot of money on the Aussie pace bowling duo of Starc and Johnson, as the world cup winning pair will now ply their trade at Eden Gardens. They will be joined by star batsman Chris Lynn, in addition to the retained West Indian pair of Sunil Narine and Andre Russell.
Heavy investment went in bringing the experienced pair of Robin Uthappa and Dinesh Karthik to the Kolkata franchise, in addition to several promising U-19 stars such as Shubnam Gill, Kamlesh Nagarkoti and Shivam Mavi.
Here is the KKR squad after the auction,
Sunil Narine, Andre Russell, Chris Lynn, Mitchell Starc, Dinesh Karthik, Robin Uthappa, Kuldeep Singh Yadav, Piyush Chawla, Nitish Rana, Kamlesh Nagarkoti, Shivam Mavi, Mitchell Johnson, Shubman Gill, Ranganath Vinay Kumar, Rinku Singh, Cameron Delport, Javon Searless, Apoorv Vijay Wankhade, Ishank Jaggi
Right now, Uthappa, Lynn and Karthik are the captaincy options for KKR. Ideally, they should have picked someone with previous captaincy experience, something that none of the above mentioned trio have.
Uthappa is the leading candidate for now, given his experience in the league and previous allegiance with the Kolkata side. The graceful batsman starred with the bat during KKR’s last IPl triumph back in 2014, as Uthappa top scored in the tournament that season.
The Kolkata franchise will be hoping their U-19 stars perform this season, as there are huge expectations on those young shoulders. Gill, Mavi and Nagarkoti were all part of India’s victorious U-19 world cup team, and should realize that a good performance in the IPL will go a long way in fast tracking their path into the national team.
Overall, KKR have a nice balance to their side, and with a good captain, they can go far in to the tournament.