Wasim Akram. PC- PCB
Wasim Akram. PC- PCB

Wasim Akram, former KKR bowling coach, has warned Sunrisers Hyderabad (SRH) that Kolkata Knight Riders are aggressive, but not just aggressive they have a calculated mindset. His warning has come as KKR preps to face off with SRH in Qualifier 1 of the IPL 2024.

The match will be played at the Narendra Modi Stadium in Ahmedabad on May 21, 2024. The winner of this match will go straight into the final of the IPL 2024, while the loser will get one more chance as they’ll play the winner of the Eliminator in Qualifier 2.

KKR finished the league stage on top of the table, with an all-time-high NRR of 1.428. They played collective cricket and performed admirably in both the batting and bowling areas to demonstrate their superiority.

While SRH followed a similar formula, with slightly more aggression in the batting department, they face a difficult struggle against KKR, who have a formidable bowling attack. When the two sides met in the league stage, Shreyas Iyer and Co. emerged victorious with a nail-biting four-run win at Eden Gardens.

Wasim Akram praises KKR bowling attack; says the franchise has shown controlled aggression thus far

Wasim Akram, who was the KKR bowling coach for a long time in the IPL, praised the KKR bowling attack for hunting in packs throughout the season rather than relying on individual brilliance to win.

“This is [bowling] is one of the main factors [behind KKR finishing on top of the points table]. There are wicket-taking bowlers. The teams that will take wickets will win the matches. If you see Chakaravarthy has 18, Harshit Rana’s 16, all-rounders Andre Russell and Sunil Narine have 15, and Mitchell Starc has 12. Starc single-handedly won them a game as well. They are going in the final as a calm, confident, and very dangerous side for sure,” Akram told Sportskeeda.

The return of Gautam Gambhir as a mentor has worked wonders for KKR, as the two-time IPL-winning captain instilled confidence in the team, allowing them to play a bold brand of cricket, with Sunil Narine returning his opener spot.

Shreyas Iyer has also done an excellent job as captain, seeming aggressive with his bowling changes and field placements.

Wasim Akram talked about KKR’s controlled aggression but also admitted that the absence of Phil Salt at the top will hurt the franchise.

“Almost everyone performed, they played Manish Pandey in one game and he also delivered. So, that shows that everybody is happy and confident. They have aggression, but they have controlled aggression. They are not cocky or overconfident. No doubt, Phil Salt’s absence will affect them,” he added.

KKR qualified for the final of the IPL last time in 2021 under the captaincy of Eoin Morgan and lost to Chennai Super Kings in UAE.

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