Let’s take a look at the Kolkata Knight Riders squad, their strengths and weaknesses and their key players.
Andre Russell, Dinesh Karthik, Harry Gurney, Kamlesh Nagarkoti, Kuldeep Yadav, Lockie Ferguson, Nitish Rana, Prasidh Krishna, Rinku Singh, Sandeep Warrier, Shivam Mavi, Shubman Gill, Siddhesh Lad, Sunil Narine, Pat Cummins, Eoin Morgan, Varun Chakravarthy, Tom Banton, Rahul Tripathi, Chris Green, Manimaran Siddharth, Praveen Tambe, Nikhil Naik.
Kolkata Knight Riders have some heavy batting units among them. The likes of Andre Russell, Eoin Morgan, Sunil Narine, Tom Banton and Chris Green are their foreign hitters. KKR also has Indians like Dinesh Karthik, Shubman Gill, Nitish Rana and Rahul Tripathi, who can all do some damage to their opponents.
KKR is blessed to have plenty of finishers in their side. Already having one of the best finishers in Andre Russell, they also added Eoin Morgan to the team this season, which will give them a much bigger boost. Captain Dinesh Karthik can also do wonders for his side. Don’t forget also Sunil Narine can finish off matches if he bats lower down the order.
Another strength of KKR is in their pace unit. They are blessed to have many young talents up their sleeves, which is something not many teams have. Young guns like Prasidh Krishna, Shivam Mavi, Kamlesh Nagarkoti and Sandeep Warrier are all just joyous to watch. Along with this, they have gained the services of some experienced speedsters in Pat Cummins, Lockie Ferguson and Harry Gurney. A very powerful pace unit and it can certainly trouble even the best of the teams.
This is one of Kolkata’s biggest issues for this season. The KKR squad has a lot of young talent, but experienced Indian campaigners are not available. There are only three Indian team players in their squad: Dinesh Karthik, Shubman Gill and Kuldeep Yadav. From this, their only Indian batsman with experience in the highest level is captain Kuldeep Yadav, their only experienced Indian bowler. This could play a big factor when it comes to crunch situations.
The Russell factor
Kolkata Knight Riders depend a lot on star all-rounder Andre Russell. This can become a problem for them since he has been facing injuries for some time now. If Russell is injured and misses a few matches, things can turn upside down for KKR. They can only wish he stays healthy and fit throughout the tournament, but only time will tell us that.