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Saturday, Sep 21, 2019

IPL 2017: KKR’s Manish Pandey, Yusuf Pathan seek platform for Champions Trophy

Kolkata Knight Riders’ Yusuf Pathan and Manish Pandey are eyeing to make an impact in the Indian Premier League (IPL) 2017 to press their claim for a spot in India’s Champions Trophy squad

ipl-2017 Updated: Apr 03, 2017 18:04 IST
Dhiman Sarkar
Dhiman Sarkar
Yusuf Pathan and Darren Bravo are two senior players of Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) in the Indian Premier league (IPL) 2017.
Yusuf Pathan and Darren Bravo are two senior players of Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) in the Indian Premier league (IPL) 2017.(PTI)

Some of the Kolkata Knights Riders (KKR) players had a busy Monday morning and it had nothing to do with cricket. Fulfilling off-the-pitch commitments - par for the course during the 10th Indian Premier League (IPL) - had Manish Pandey, Chris Lynn, Surya Kumar Yadav, Yusuf Pathan and Darren Bravo traversing from the eastern fringe of the city to downtown, from a sports museum to a jewellery store.

Is that why they couldn’t stick to schedule or was it because they were unveiling bling that they were ‘fashionably’ late? At the jewellery, Bravo and his mates even dropped their precious catch before officially launching the limited edition merchandise amid all-round laughter.

Read | Umesh Yadav to miss opening games for Kolkata Knight Riders in IPL 2017

For Pandey, the 10th IPL would be an opportunity to get noticed ahead of the Champions Trophy. “It will be important for me to perform well again in the IPL and look forward to the Champions Trophy. But for now, I am focusing on the IPL,” said KKR’s No. 3 batsman.

Read | Andre Russell’s absence an opportunity for KKR players to shine: Gautam Gambhir

Ditto Pathan. “To make a comeback for the country is the ultimate aim. It’s about making full use of the opportunity I get here. In fact, I started my career through IPL first season,” said the 34-year-old all-rounder, who hasn’t played for India since March 2012 but made a 35-ball 56 with three fours and three sixes in the last T20 match he played. That was on February 4 for Baroda against Maharashtra.

“Yusuf Pathan’s role is to hit the fastest fifty of the tournament,” said Lynn.

Home away from home: Bravo

Bravo, whose half-brother Dwayne has been a marquee player in this league, said being part of the Knights is like being in the family, a home away from home. The brothers played for Trinbago Knight Riders in the Caribbean Premier League last year, a team which has the same owners as KKR. That Bravo, 28, also scored a Test century at Eden could accentuate that feeling of coming home.

“By all means, the IPL is the No.1 T20 competition in the world. I think I am very privileged to be part of the KKR team. KKR is the owner of CPL team (Trinbago Knight Riders), so for me its like a family and coming back home,” he said.

First Published: Apr 03, 2017 17:36 IST