IPL 8 Team Preview: Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR)




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The Kolkata Knight Riders enter the latest season of the IPL with huge expectations. Being the defending champions the men from Kolkata can surely be counted as one of the favourites to win the tournament. Having retained most of their players from last season and the inclusion of mystery spinners are sure to give their title defence a major boost. Their captain Gautam Gambhir would have to be credited as being the mainstay of the team and he has more often then not led from the front. They play the opening match of this season’s IPL and a win over Mumbai Indians will be the ideal start for the Champions.

Squad: Gautam Gambhir, Sunil Narine(O), Robin Uthappa, Piyush Chawla,Yusuf Pathan,Shakib Al Hasan(O),Morne Morkel(O), Umesh Yadav,Manish Pandey,Pat Cummins(O),Ryan ten Doeschate(O),Suryakumar Yadav,Andre Russell(O),Veer Pratap Singh,Kuldeep Yadav,Brad Hogg(O),Sumit Narwal,Sheldon Jackson(O),Aditya Garhwal,KC Cariappa,Vaibhav Rawal,Azhar Mahmood(O),Johan Botha(O)

Players Retained:  Gautam Gambhir, Andre Russell, Chris Lynn, Kuldeep Yadav, Manish Pandey, Suryakumar Yadav, Morne Morkel, Patrick Cummins, Piyush Chawla, Robin Uthappa, Ryan ten Doeschate, Shakib Al Hasan, Sunil Narine, Umesh Yadav, Veer Pratap Singh, Yusuf Pathan.

Players Released: Debabrata Das, Sayan Sekhar Mandal, Jacques Kallis.

Coach: Trevor Bayliss

Captain: Gautam Gambhir

Most Expensive Player: KC Cariappa(India) – 2.4 crore

IPL 7 Position: Champions

Owners:  Shah Rukh Khan, Juhi Chawla, Red Chillies Entertainment and Jay Mehta

Keys to Success:

1. Spinning Options: The KKR squad boasts of quality spinning options. It would not be not wrong to say that they probably have the best spinners in the tournament. With the likes of Sunil Narine, Kuldeep Yadav, Piyush Chawla,KC Cariappa and Johan Botha in their ranks, the Knight Riders have played to their strength. The Eden Gardens wicket is generally conducive to spin bowling and at home they are extremely difficult to score.

2.Home Performance: The Knight Riders are a very difficult team to beat at home. They did not lose a single game last season on their home turf and this just goes to show why they eventually turned out champions even after winning just 2 of their opening 7 matches.

Likely Playing XI: Gautam Gambhir(C), Robin Uthappa(WK),Sunil Narine,Yusuf Pathan,Shakib Al Hasan,Ryan ten Doeschate,Morne Morkel,KC Cariappa,Manish Pandey,Suryakumar Yadav,Umesh Yadav.

*O: Overseas Player

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