'Don't talk about individuals. How many did KKR win?': Gautam Gambhir's smashing response to critics of Mitchell Starc | Crickit
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'Don't talk about individuals. How many did KKR win?': Gautam Gambhir's smashing response to critics of Mitchell Starc

Apr 13, 2024 07:10 PM IST

KKR mentor Gautam Gambhir is not at all stressed by Mitchell Starc's below-par returns in the 17th edition of the IPL.

IPL's costliest buy, Mitchell Starc is proving to be a loss-making investment for Kolkata Knight Riders. The Australian left-arm quick, who was bought by the franchise for a whopping sum of 24.75 crore, has so far taken just two wickets in IPL 2024 at an average of 77 and has leaked 11 runs per over across four matches. Barring the match against Delhi Capitals, where Star returned with figures of 2/25, Starc has gone wicketless in all the other matches so far.

Kolkata Knight Riders mentor Gautam Gambhir(PTI)
Kolkata Knight Riders mentor Gautam Gambhir(PTI)

What's more worrying for KKR is that the lanky pacer has got very little swing with the new ball and has gone for plenty at the death. These are the two areas where Starc thrives in white-ball cricket. KKR mentor Gautam Gambhir, however, is not at all stressed by Starc's below-par returns in the 17th edition of the IPL.

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The former KKR captain said he doesn't care about individual performances. "There's no reason why you should talk about individual performance. I feel that Mitchell Starc has done reasonably okay. I think he's bowled some tough overs. And he will create an impact, what he's been picked for," Gambhir told reporters in Kolkata on the eve KKR's next match against Lucknow Super Giants.

After playing three away games, KKR have returned to their fortress Eden Gardens. They have three back-to-back matches scheduled here. A victory in at least two of them it would firmly place the two-time champions in the race to playoffs. And Gambhir knows that Starc will play a key role in it.

"Tomorrow it might be a completely different day. Or probably going forward, it could be a completely different day. An individual can have a brilliant performance and the team doesn't end up winning," Gambhir added.

Gambhir said there was no doubt about Starc's quality and a few bad games don't make him a bad bowler. "It (his poor stats) doesn't matter, T20 cricket is all about bowlers getting smashed. We've got three wins out of four," the former India opener said. “In a team sport, it's the wins that matter. We have got three wins out of four. Why should I not be happy with anyone's performance? See, people have bad and good days, ultimately, it's the team that needs to win.

"And we've got decent results in the first four games of the competition. And we all know how big a threat Mitchell Starc is. Four games don't make him a bad bowler."And four good games don't make him a brilliant bowler either. So I know what impact he can create and what impact he will create in the competition.”

Gambhir, who was Lucknow Super Giants’ mentor in the last two seasons, has returned to his former team that won two titles (2012 and 2014) during his previous stint at KKR from 2011-17.

KKR could never win against LSG in three attempts while Gambhir was at the opposition dugout.

Gambhir said it's a new day and they would start from scratch.

"It's a new day, new start. What difference does it make that what has happened in the last two years? It really makes no difference. We start from scratch."All of us are really looking forward to the game tomorrow. You know, it's a quality side. But we are a quality side as well,” he said.

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