Kolkata Knight Riders have struggled this season and have not been able to put on a winning run and make use of their resources. From the top-order to their bowling attack, nothing has worked for them this year and it shows in their position in the table.
Under the leadership of Eoin Morgan, KKR didn’t get the luck they would have. The team has failed to win games from winning situations and on other occasions, looked completely clueless.
When the tournament was called off, KKR had played 7 matches, winning two and losing five matches and they had a net run-rate of -0.494. They are currently seventh in the table behind Delhi Capitals.
Kolkata Knight Riders squad: Eoin Morgan (C), Dinesh Karthik, Andre Russell, Kamlesh Nagarkoti, Kuldeep Yadav, Lockie Ferguson, Nitish Rana, Prasidh Krishna, Gurkeerat Singh Mann, Sandeep Warrier, Shivam Mavi, Shubman Gill, Sunil Narine, Pat Cummins, Rahul Tripathi, Varun Chakravarthy, Pawan Negi, Tim Seifert, Shakib al Hasan, Sheldon Jackson, Vaibhav Arora, Karun Nair, Harbhajan Singh, Ben Cutting, Venkatesh Iyer
Here is a SWOT analysis of the KKR team based on their performances in this year’s IPL so far.
KKR have had no strengths this season. Despite a strong and capable team on paper, they have failed to fire unanimously and win matches. The middle-order which is one of the best on paper hasn’t stood up and gone all guns blazing to help the team.
SLOW TOP-ORDER: KKR have struggled extremely because of their top three not going all-out. Shubman Gill and Nitish Rana have been steady openers but neither attack the power plays and that leave the batsmen who follow with immense work to do and they have failed hugely this season.
SHUFFLING MIDDLE-ORDER: The likes of Dinesh Karthik, Morgan and Russell get shuffled way too much. A team that has so much firepower has hardly been able to use it properly and has struggled to win games or even chase modest targets on occasions because of the uncertainty.
NO STRIKE BOWLER: KKR have some fantastic bowlers in Cummins, Prasidh Krishna and Varun Chakravarthy but nobody has been able to step up and take wickets when it was the need of the hour. Chakravarthy failed to replicate last year’s success in India and would be hoping a trip to the United Arab Emirates (UAE) will return him his fortunes.
BEN CUTTING and TIM SIEFERT: Ben Cutting and Tim Siefert could gain if Morgan is not allowed to play in the second half of the tournament. Siefert is an aggressive opening batsman and Morgan’s absence could allow KKR to play him up top — an area where they have struggled.
Cutting could also find himself in the middle-order in Morgan’s absence and can catch the eye of the Australian selectors as well with some good all-round performances ahead of the World T20.
LOCKIE FERGUSON: Lockie Ferguson could play in Pat Cummins’s absence as the lead KKR bowler. While New Zealand Cricket is yet to clear their players to participate in the league, Ferguson could well replace Cummins with the ball in hand.
PLAYERS BACKING OUT: Cummins has already ruled himself out of the IPL if and when it goes ahead this year but they could also lose their captain. Morgan might well not be allowed to play in the second half of the tournament by the English Cricket Board (ECB) because of fatigue and the World T20 that will be right after the tournament. Bangladesh has also raised concerns regarding Shakib’s availability for the second part when it goes ahead.
IPL 2021 is likely to be played from September 19 to October 15 in the UAE. 31 matches will be played in total across 27 days.