Post the IPL 2018 auctions, the franchises have a new look to the team with many new faces coming up and some old veteran players to represent their local franchise. With the 11th edition of Indian Premier League to start off in April, team Circle of Cricket gets down to list the key players from Kolkata Knight Riders squad who can make a difference with their performance this year.
Kolkata Knight Riders who have won the IPL two times under the captaincy of Gautam Gambhir are soon to announce their new captain for the 11th edition. The team of Kolkata Knight Riders is very well known to win hearts with their all-around performance are yet again charged to spread their magic in IPL 2018. The team will miss Gautam Gambhir in their dugout this year as the player was not retained.
Kolkata based team Kolkata Knight Riders owned by King Khan of Bollywood Shah Rukh Khan has the most number of fan following in social media. They have more than 14 million Facebook followers and more than 2 million Twitter followers.
Starting his IPL journey with Mumbai Indians, KKR roped in Robin Uthappa in 2014 and since then he has been one of their key players over the years. The franchise retained him using the RTM card and he will shoulder the responsibilities at the top of the order with Aussie T20 specialist Chris Lynn
Robin Uthappa is a very skillful player for KKR because he is very good at the top order, with rotating strike he knows his role in the team. Robin Uthappa not only brings his batting with himself but his abilities behind the wickets also make him a special player. Robin has already scored more than 3500 runs in IPL with much more to come this season.
At the top order, there is one more attacking option in the form of Chris Lynn who can make a difference with his batting. The Australian batsman was bought for a jaw-dropping amount of rupees 9.6 crores. Lynn is one of the players who can heat and spice up the tournament with his performance. With captaincy spot being vacant after Gambhir's exit, Lynn would be a perfect choice for becoming captain of the team KKR in IPL 2018 only once he is totally fit, his form will be a serious issue for the franchise. However, Uthappa has the backing of many former cricket experts for the job.
Sunil Narine the cricketer from West Indies who has 8 bowling variations including the arm ball, doosra, topspin and googly will definitely prove to be a very deadly bowler for the opposition in the death overs along with other young cricket sensation Kuldeep who is the first Chinaman.
Sunil has full freedom to swing his bat up at the top order with Lynn. Sunil Narine is special to KKR because he can bat and bowl as well, he has the ability to fire with his bat and take wickets with the ball in hand. He is the only bowler to bowl a maiden super over in cricket history. He proved to be a handful at the top order for KKR last year and was a revelation for KKR. He provides another option at the top order for KKR.
Kuldeep's presence will benefit Narine as KKR will always have a backup plan and 8 overs with some twisting spin. The other two key bowling options for KKR are the two Mitchells from Australia, Mitchell Starc and Mitchell Johnson. Johnson having retired from the game has been plying his trade for different T20 franchises across the globe. Starc, on the other hand, finds a new team after being associated with RCB for 2014 and 2015. Injury will be a big issue for both these two fast bowlers.
Coming to the allrounders, there is no other better option than Andre Russell in Kolkata Knight Riders who can hit the bowl so clean. Russell is a key player for Kolkata and a pinch hitter as well who can change the course of any match. The player was retained by the franchise with his Windies partner Sunil Narine
A consistent strike rate of 179.90, Russell will act as a solid pillar for the team with giving confidence to other players for delivery an all-around performance.
The players listed above, form the core strength of the franchise and have the ability to win matches for the team. It will be great to see how each one of them performs under Jacques Kallis who is the coach of Kolkata Knight Riders.