Kolkata Knight Riders did the right thing at IPL auctions: Gautam Gambhir
“We always had a strong bowling attack and bowling will be the key this time too,” Gautam Gambhir said about Kolkata Knight Riders’ acquisitions at the IPL auctions this yearipl 2017 Updated: Apr 15, 2017 10:47 IST
Former India skipper Gautam Gambhir’s recent stint as Delhi captain may have left a bitter taste, but the left-handed opener, returns to lead Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) in the Indian Premier League (IPL) with the confidence that a great record precedes him.
“We always had a strong bowling attack and bowling will be the key this time too,” he told HT before flying out to join his team.
“I always believe bowlers win you games. If they can take wickets, they can take the pressure off your batting. I think we have done a reasonable job at the auctions. We have strengthened our bowling, bringing in Nathan Coulter-Nile, Trent Boult and Chris Woakes.”
The overseas bowling trio cost KKR R12.7 crore at the auctions this year.
New Zealander Boult missed the ongoing Test at Hamilton against South Africa due to a groin injury but is likely to be fit for the IPL. Gambhir called him his trump card.
“Boult will be the player to watch out for. He is a quality bowler, can swing the ball, and bowl at a decent pace. He can get you wickets upfront and that is what you want from your strike bowler. He can complement Sunil Narine well and get wickets,” said Gambhir.
KKR suffered a blow a few days before the auctions when Andre Russell was banned over doping whereabouts violation. Russell was the pick of the KKR bowlers last year with 15 wickets. The West Indian all-rounder added power to their batting too.
Gambhir feels Russell’s absence in the latter part of last season cost them dear. Russell was ruled out due to a leg injury and couldn’t play the eliminator against Sunrisers Hyderabad which KKR lost.
“In an important stage, we lost Andre Russell. It was a massive loss because he was the one who could finish off games. Then he didn’t play the playoffs and we missed him there too,” said Gambhir.