The 2018 edition of the Indian Premier League (IPL 2018) is going to be quite integral for the Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR), as the franchise has chosen Dinesh Karthik as the new KKR captain to lead the franchise in IPL 2018 and continue the good run, that was initiated by Gautam Gambhir when he was made the leader of the KKR in 2011 Indian Premier League.
Dinesh Karthik named KKR captain for IPL 2018
Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) had started off the Indian Premier League campaign in a disappointing fashion, displaying poor performance in the first three seasons of the cash-rich Indian T20 league. However, KKR’s fortune had taken a 360 degree turn when Gautam Gambhir was made the KKR captain in 2011. In the period of six years, KKR won two IPL titles (2012, 2014), but as Gambhir had moved on to the Delhi Daredevils side, there was a vacant spot for the role of KKR captain, which had to be filled after a well thought-out plan.
Dinesh Karthik was well-suited for the role of KKR captain, as he has got decent records from his Indian Premier League career, playing in the league and performing when the need be, since the very first edition of the Indian Premier League. Dinesh Karthik has gathered an immense lot of IPL experience, playing with teams like the Delhi Daredevils, Mumbai Indians.
Dinesh Karthik, the wicket-keeper batsman has displayed great character and was expected to lead the KKR side well in IPL 2018 season. The Kolkata Knight Riders’ (KKR) Twitter officially announced Dinesh Karthik as their captain, and wrote, “Drumrolls!
Experienced wicket-keeper batsman,
@DineshKarthik will lead the men in Purple and Gold for VIVO @IPL 2018.”
— KolkataKnightRiders (@KKRiders) March 4, 2018
Speaking after assuming the role of KKR captain, Dinesh Karthik said, “Excited. Will look to perform to the best of my ability.”
“KKR has done well consistently in the last ten years. The team has a great legacy. I am really happy and honoured to lead this side.”
The new KKR captain further added, “We have a good blend of youth and experience. We are looking forward to work under coach Jacques Kallis. All the foreign players are really good too. I will try to take the team forward from where Gautam Gambhir left.”
The assistant coach of the Kolkata Knight Riders, Simon Katich spoke on DInesh Karthik and said, “Dinesh Karthik knows the conditions well. He is experienced and I’m sure he’ll help the youngsters.”
Robin Uthappa named the vice-captain
Robin Uthappa, who was being considered for the role of KKR captain too, was named the vice-captain of the franchise for IPL 2018.
Uthappa was bought by the KKR side at the IPL 2018 auction for INR 6.4 crore through RTM. The wicketkeeper-batsman has been an integral part of KKR ever since he was bagged by the Shahrukh Khan owned team in the seventh season of the Indian Premier League. Uthappa was being expected to lead the Kolkata franchise as he had gained a healthy experience with the team, and was in a better position to become KKR captain, as compared to Dinesh Karthik, who has joined the team in IPL 2018.
Speaking about the integral role of KKR captain in IPL 2018, Sourav Ganguly had said earlier that Dinesh Karthik and Robin Uthappa were the front runners for the role of KKR captain, as both cricketers had shown great promise. Ganguly, who is a former KKR captain, had said, as reported by Hindustan Times,
“It is important for KKR to entrust their new captain with the kind of faith and stability they showed in Gautam Gambhir. When I look at the current KKR squad, I feel Robin Uthappa is the best player to lead the team.”
“Though, the team has experienced campaigners in Dinesh Karthik and Chris Lynn but Uthappa has been with the team for over 4 years now and he’s had considerable experience in dealing with the dynamics of the side, not to mention that he’s a fan favourite as well. An aggressive batsman himself, he will be the right successor to the legacy that KKR has come to build over the last decade.”