Kolkata Knight Riders are riding on two consecutive wins, defeating Sunrisers Hyderabad and Rajasthan Royals in the wake of climbing up the Indian Premier League 2020 points table. KKR suffered a heavy 47-run defeat in their first game against Mumbai Indians, but found a way back in style in the next two games
KKR have improved their bowling since the first game, with youngsters like Shivam Mavi and Kamlesh Nagarkoti picking up wickets. The addition of Varun Chakravarthy has relieved pressure off Kuldeep Yadav to pick wickets and KKR opener Shubman Gill has also found form.
But one thing that does not seem to be working for KKR this season is the opening partnership between Sunil Narine and Gill. In a recent interaction on Sports Tak, former India cricketer Madan Lal said that Dinesh Karthik should open with Gill, instead of Narine.
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“Sunil Narine is not able to play the big hits now. It would be better if Dinesh Karthik himself opens instead of Narine so that his batting order does not go that far back,” he said.
“I will not open with Sunil Narine. I will have a proper batsman with Shubman Gill because in the first 6 overs even if a proper batsman comes, they will score 50-60 runs.
“Dinesh Karthik has to open or he needs to bat after Morgan and Russell. His team might suffer if he tries to bat above Morgan and Russell in the middle order,” he added.
“Kolkata Knight Riders have two-three very exciting youngsters in their team – Shubman Gill, Nagarkoti and Shivam Mavi. Shubman Gill has not been able to make the big runs because he does not have a good opener along with him.
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“I was noticing that when Shubman Gill was batting he was playing drives against Jofra Archer, who was bowling at 150 kph, off the front foot. Normally batsmen go on the back foot when they face fast bowling.
“It shows that he is definitely a long-term prospect. I feel we will hear a lot about him in the coming days and the Indian team is going to get a very good player,” Madan Lal further opined.
KKR will next face off against Delhi Capitals on Saturday in IPL.