IPL 2018: Simon Katich Reckons KKR to Kick Off as ‘Underdogs’ against RCB
Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) batting coach Simon Katich believes KKR will start as underdogs in their opening fixture against Virat Kohli-led Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB).
The former Australian cricketer Katich also feels RCB is one of the favourites to win this league.
“No doubt, we go in as underdogs as RCB are one of the joint-favourites to win the title. We look forward to the challenge in proving people wrong,” Katich said.
“Quick outfield, beautiful conditions, and a full house on Sunday. We are looking forward to a fantastic start to the IPL for us. We just can’t wait to get out there. Hopefully, we will get him (Kohli) caught at the slips like last year,” Katich said recalling Kohli’s duck here in 2017.
However, things will not be so easy for the Dinesh Karthik-led KKR. They will bank on the wealth of experience they have.
Karthik’s stock has increased since his last ball six against Bangladesh to win the Nidahas Trophy. Although, he is a surprise choice as skipper to lead the high profile KKR.
“From captaincy point of view, he’s in the perfect time of his career to really grab the opportunity. He has done that with Tamil Nadu with a fair bit of success. He is a highly experienced player in the IPL, played for 10 years,” Katich said.
Moreover, Karthik has represented five different franchises before joining KKR. He has played 152 matches across all the ten seasons for various teams.
Meanwhile, KKR looks to be a weaker side on paper but given the abilities, they can beat any team. They will rely heavily on Robin Uthappa and Chris Lynn to give a perfect start.
Katich admitted that Lynn has recovered from his shoulder injury and is raring to go.
“Obviously, Lynn has injury concern but he’s fully fit at the moment. Judging by his form in the practice sessions, hopefully, we will see some fireworks on April 8,” Katich said.
The middle-order will not have Manish Pandey but Katich feels they have enough player to replace him.
Simon Katich further made it clear that their mystery spinner Sunil Narine has worked on his action.
However, Narine was reported for his actions during the Pakistan Super League (PSL).
KKR also have three talented youngsters in the Under-19 World Cup winning trio of Shubman Gill, Shivam Mavi, and Kamlesh Nagarkoti.
“Given that we have a lot of experience in your team, there might be one or two spots available for the youngsters to grab an opportunity and perform,” Katich concluded.
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