Kolkata Knight Riders start their iPL 14 campaign with a high-octane clash against the Sunrisers Hyderabad. Ahead of the third game of the tournament, KKR skipper Eoin Morgan spoke at length with the official KKR website and decoded some of his plans and what they aspire to do in this season to turn their fortunes around.
Morgan who was handed over the captaincy reigns midway through the last season feels that the inclusion of Shakib Al Hasan will provide a different dynamic to the team especially given the fact that all teams will be playing in neutral venues. Shakib returned to KKR after he was bought in the Mini-Auctions for Rs 3.2 crores.
"Shakib Al Hasan gives us a different dynamic in the team," Morgan told kkr.in. "Given that we play at different venues where the conditions change quite a lot, you have a spin-bowling allrounder who had success in international cricket and IPL at different stages. If called upon, he can definitely deliver."
I think considering the possible holes we had in our squad last year, we had a very good auction this year, made some good recruitment decisions and managed to get people on board with a small budget, giving us a lot more depth around the squad," Morgan added.
Over the years, spin bowling all-rounder Sunil Narine has been an asset for the two-time champions. However, he has been far from his best in the last couple of occasions and had to warm the benches for quite a few matches last season. In that regard, Shakib can be a good like for like replacement for Narine.
The Caribbean spinner was also reported for suspect action last season and put him in the warning list which effectively meant that he could have been suspended from bowling if he was reported again. However given the aura surrounding Narine, Morgan believed in his abilities and Narine did live up to his expectations on a few occasions.
"In big moments of the game, particularly last year, you would throw Sunil the ball or you would get him in with the bat because he has been in that situation over and over again; he believes in himself and in the team to go and get through and win that situation," Morgan said.