IPL 2018: Robin Uthappa says Indian domestic cricketers are valuable for IPL

Robin Uthappa will play for KKR again in IPL 2018.

Robin Uthappa | Getty

Robin Uthappa will be playing again for the Kolkata franchise in Indian Premier League (IPL). He has an impressive record with Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR). KKR used Right-To-Match card on the wicket-keeper during the IPL auction 2018.

"The initial five or six years of the IPL, I moved around a lot, so for me to find one place I could call home was important," Uthappa told Sportstar.

"The people back in Kolkata are absolutely fantastic, they've treated me with so much love and care. Even the team management has stood by me right from the time I joined them," he added.

KKR spent all their money and still got the least number of players. However their 19-man squad looks good to give a tough fight. They have bought some domestics players too for the upcoming season.

"I think we've to understand the value the Indian domestic players bring into the franchise," the 32-year-old.

"It is only when you give them responsibilities that you find out whether they are going to flourish as athletes or learn how to handle the pressure. What the team has done is, it has given them a chance to expose themselves to some quality international cricket and see how the boys do.

"I think it's great foresight. A lot of the domestic Indian batters must be gung-ho about playing in the first team and that's a great position to be in," he added.

Uthappa also talked about the newly emerged talent from U-19 World Cup, Shubham Gill, who was sold to KKR. Gill has impressed everyone with his batting display.

"(Shubman) Gill has got a very strong game, I think he's a naturally aggressive player. And he looks very versatile at this point in time.

"Obviously, the variations and pace (in IPL) are going to be different  — it'll be five or 10 clicks faster. It's about acclimatising to the conditions but I feel these guys will do great because of the kind of exposure they've had at such a young age. The next few years are going to be strong years for KKR."

Asked if he'll be willing to take the mantle of captaincy in IPL 2018, the dynamic opener said, "Of course, I am. I'll be honoured if the opportunity came along but it's for the think-tank to decide — whatever role they want me to take, I'll give my 110 percent. Adding value to my team as a cricketer is crucial to my game."


By Sihyeu Singh - 07 Feb, 2018

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