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Who will KKR buy in IPL 2024 Auction? Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) are one of the most successful teams in the history of the Indian Premier League (IPL), having won the trophy twice in 2012 and 2014. However, they have not been able to replicate their glory in the last 10 years, and will be eager to end their drought in the upcoming edition of the IPL.
The IPL 2024 auction, which is scheduled to take place on 19th December 2023, will be a crucial event for KKR to build a strong and balanced squad for the tournament. The Sporting News analyses the possible players that KKR might target in the auction.
Kolkata Knight Riders squad list for IPL 2024
KKR have retained only 13 players from their previous squad, which means they have a lot of slots to fill in the auction. They have also released some big names like Shakib Al Hasan, Shardul Thakur, Lockie Ferguson, Umesh Yadav, and Tim Southee. Their retained players are:
- Shreyas Iyer
- Rinku Singh
- Nitish Rana
- Varun Chakaravarthy
- Venkatesh Iyer
- Rahmanullah Gurbaz*
- Jason Roy*
- Sunil Narine*
- Andre Russell*
- Anukul Roy
- Suyash Sharma
- Vaibhav Arora
- Harshit Rana
KKR have a remaining purse of INR 32.7 Crores, which is the third-highest among all the teams. They also have four overseas slots available.
Who will KKR buy in IPL 2024 Auction?
KKR have a solid batting lineup, with the likes of Gurbaz, Roy, Rinku, Rana, Shreyas Iyer, and Venkatesh Iyer. They also have two explosive all-rounders in Russell and Narine, who can change the game with both bat and ball. However, they lack an experienced middle-order batsman who can anchor the innings and finish the games.
Their bowling department is also very weak, as they have only four uncapped Indian bowlers and no overseas bowlers. They need to invest in some quality pacers and spinners who can bowl in the powerplay and the death overs. Here are some of the players that KKR might go for in the auction:
New Zealand batting allrounder Rachin Ravindra, who scored 578 runs at a strike rate of 106 and took five wickets at the World Cup, has listed his base price at INR 50 lakhs (USD 60,000 approximately). He is outstanding with the bat and a handy bowler when needed. He will be worth every Penny if KKR goes for him.
Mitchell Starc / Josh Hazlewood
KKR need a world-class fast bowler who can lead their attack and provide them with early breakthroughs and economical overs. Mitchell Starc and Josh Hazlewood are two of the best pacers in the world, who have recently won the World Cup with Australia. They have also played for KKR in the past, and are familiar with the conditions and the team.
Starc is a lethal left-arm pacer who can swing the ball both ways and bowl yorkers at will. He has 34 wickets in 27 IPL matches at an average of 20.38 and an economy of 7.17. He can also contribute with the bat lower down the order.
Hazlewood is a right-arm pacer who can bowl with accuracy and discipline. He can extract bounce and seam movement from any surface and trouble the batsmen with his variations.
Both Starc and Hazlewood have a base price of INR 2 Crores, and are likely to attract a lot of bids from other teams. KKR might have to shell out a big amount to secure their services, but it will be worth it.
KKR have a problem of leaking runs in the death overs, which has cost them many matches in the past. They need a specialist death bowler who can bowl yorkers, slower balls, and cutters with precision and consistency. Harshal Patel is the perfect candidate for this role, as he has shown in the previous edition of the IPL.
Patel was the leading wicket-taker in IPL 2023, with 32 wickets in 15 matches at an average of 15.06 and an economy of 8.07. He also scored 118 runs at a strike rate of 147.5.
Patel has a base price of INR 2 Crores, and might not face much competition from other teams, as he has lost his place in the Indian team and has been released by RCB. KKR can get him for a bargain price, and he will be a valuable addition to their squad.
KKR need a reliable middle-order batsman who can stabilize the innings and also accelerate when required. Azmatullah Omarzai is a young and talented Afghan all-rounder who can fit this role perfectly. He was one of the stars of the World Cup 2023, where he scored 353 runs at an average of 70.6 and a strike rate of 134.5. He also picked up six wickets with his medium-fast bowling.
Omarzai has a base price of INR 50 Lakhs, and might not be on the radar of many teams, as he is relatively unknown and untested in the IPL. KKR can take a gamble on him, and he might turn out to be a surprise package for them. He can also provide them with a sixth or seventh bowling option, which will give them more flexibility in their team combination.
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