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IPL 2024 Auction: Players on Knight Riders's radar for a competitive squad

With Rs 32.7 crore in their purse, Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) would be on a look out for 12 players (4 overseas) to build a perfect squad under new mentor Gambhir

Pat Cummins hit the joint fastest fifty in IPL history off just 14 balls against Mumbai Indians. Photo: @IPL

Pat Cummins hit the joint fastest fifty in IPL history off just 14 balls against Mumbai Indians. Photo: @IPL

BS Web Team New Delhi

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With Gautam Gambhir at the helm of things, Kolkata Knight Riders are sure to shake things up. Shreyas Iyer is back as captain and hence one of the major problems is solved with Nitish Rana made his deputy. They have finishers in the form of Rinku Singh and Andre Russell.

Rahmanullah Gurbaz and Jason Roy at the top clicked well and if one of them fails, Venkatesh Iyer is there as an option as well. They have two quality spinners Sunil Narine and Varun Chakravarthy as well. What they don’t have is quality pace bowlers. They have young Harshit Rana and Vaibhav Arora, but they need a leader of the pack.

Thus, with nearly Rs 33 crore at their disposal and 12 slots to fill, including four overseas, Gambhir and co at the KKR table in the IPL 2024 auction are going to go all guns blazing. Here are the players they are going to target:

Pat Cummins

Without any doubt, Pat Cummins, who has led Knight Riders in the past will be their first choice when it comes to pacers. They would want him at any cost and so would many other teams.

Travis Head

Head is going to be a hot property as well. But because most of the teams have their opening slots or overseas batters slots settled more or less, KKR could go for him as Gurbaz and Roy might not be their first choice of overseas players in the team.

David Willey/Matt Henry

David Willey and Matt Henry could be the other two pacers that Kolkata could target, especially Willey as he bowls left-arm and can bring the ball back into the right-handers. With Cummins taking it away and Willey bringing it back, it could be a deadly combination with a cocktail of spin twins Narine and Varun.

Harshal Patel

Along with Cummins, an Indian pacer could be required if the team looks to play Andre Russell in the playing 11 in place of David Willey given that they acquired him. In such a case, Harshal Patel could become an interesting choice.

As Kolkata would look to buy Head, they would also have to make way for an Indian wicket-keeper in the playing 11. Ricky Bhui and Vishnu Solanki, both of whom play down the order, could be ‘go-to’ guys for Gambhir and co.

Retained Players

Nitish Rana, Rinku Singh, Rahmanullah Gurbaz, Shreyas Iyer, Jason Roy, Anukul Roy, Andre Russell, Venkatesh Iyer, Suyash Sharma, Harshit Rana, Sunil Narine, Vaibhav Arora, Varun Chakravarthy

Best Probable Playing 11

Venkatesh Iyer, Travis Head, Nitish Rana, Shreyas Iyer, Rinku Singh, Andre Russell, Ricky Bhui/Vishnu Solanki, Pat Cummins, Sunil Narine, Harshit Rana, Varun Chakravarthy

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First Published: Dec 15 2023 | 9:56 PM IST

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