The Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) franchise made full use of their big purse in the recently concluded IPL 2020 auction. The Shah Rukh Khan-Juhi Chawla co-owned franchise went all out for Pat Cummins in the auctions and despite some dizzying bids from Kings XI Punjab and Royal Challengers Bangalore, KKR put in the winning bid of 15.50 crores to pocket the fast bowler.
They also had some good buys in Eoin Morgan, Rahul Tripathi, Varun Chakravarthy, Chris Green and others which has them covered for all the spots that they were looking to fill. They had released some big players before the auction in Chris Lynn and Piyush Chawla, as well as Robin Uthappa and needed to have a good auction to replace them. However, one person feels that KKR still missed one crucial point of buying backups for their crucial players.
“Team has no backup for Andre Russell, Sunil Narine,” says Gautam Gambhir
Two-time IPL winning and former KKR captain Gautam Gambhir feels that the franchise does not have backup options for some of their star players and the team management could have gone for all-rounders in the players’ auction to provide the squad more depth.
“If you look at the squad as a whole, there is no backup for Andre Russell, Eoin Morgan, Sunil Narine who is a one of a kind bowler. If Eoin Morgan suffers an injury, the team has no middle order overseas batsman. The management could have gone for a Mitchell Marsh or Marcus Stoinis who would have given more depth to the squad, so you have to hope all these players are there for the entire series.,” Gambhir was quoted as saying by The Times of India.
He also felt that the franchise did not have the strength on the bench in order to deal with the crisis of an injury to one of their main players. “If Pat Cummins suffers an injury, there is a replacement with Lockie Ferguson but with the top order there is no replacement for Kolkata Knight Riders,” Gambhir added.
Meanwhile, Gambhir was optimistic about Pat Cummins winning at-least 3-4 matches on his own of he plays all the games. He also mentioned that he expected the Australian ODI vice-captain to pick wickets at the start thanks to the swing and pace he gets with the new ball, though there remains a concern with the old ball.
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