IPL 2018: KKR hopeful of Russell, Lynn for opener vs RCB

The West Indian hard hitting all-rounder, Russell, has pulled a hamstring during a match of the PSL.

Chris Lynn was suffering from a shoulder injury, which had ruled him out of the Pakistan Super League (PSL). (File Photo)   -  K.R. DEEPAK

Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) CEO, Venky Mysore, on Wednesday, cleared the air about the injury concerns of Chris Lynn and Andre Russell, saying that the two foreign players are expected to be available for the side’s Indian Premier League (IPL) opener, against Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB), on April 8.

“We are expecting Lynn and Russell to play on April 8. They will join the camp,” Mysore said, on the sidelines of Sourav Ganguly’s Kolkata leg book launch of ‘A Century Is Not Enough’.

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Australian Lynn was suffering from a shoulder injury, which had ruled him out of the Pakistan Super League (PSL), while the West Indian hard hitting all-rounder, Russell, has pulled a hamstring during a match of the PSL.

READ: IPL 2018: KKR begins camp without Karthik, Kallis

Mysore further gave an update on Mitchell Starc’s fitness, as the Australian speedster has a sore calf. “I think Starc’s report was not necessarily very accurate. He is absolutely fine. It’s a bit unfortunate with the injuries. All the reports we are getting, they are making very good progress. Fingers crossed.”

West Indian spinner Sunil Narine faced a new storm recently when his bowling action was again reported during the ongoing PSL.

“That was a strange one. But he is fine. He has played international cricket, he has played two-three series and there is absolutely no issue. He has put it behind him already.”

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KKR’s decision to appoint Dinesh Karthik as captain may have surprised many, but the wicketkeeper batsman has proved the doubters wrong, with a sensational innings, in the final of the Tri-nation T20 Series, against Bangladesh.

Karthik walked in, with India needing 34 off 12, and Bangladesh was on top. But Karthik needed only eight deliveries to dash its hopes, as he sealed a four-wicket win, with a last ball six.

“In eight balls, he has made us look like geniuses. However, we were convinced even before that, that he is absolutely the right choice for us, because he brings in a lot of freshness, a lot of experience. He is a class player. With a wicketkeeper, batsman and captain, you get three in one there,” said Mysore.

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“His calmness struck me. I have spent a lot of time with him recently, and when he came in to bat, he seemed like he was confident that he was going to win it. It bodes well for us also. I was very happy with D.K., for what he did to win the game for India.”

Asked to compare Karthik with M.S. Dhoni, Mysore said: “He is a very different type of player. I always admire the fact that D.K. has the flexibility to play under any situation. M.S. has been a legend, a power hitter, he hits those helicopter shots. D.K. has got his shots. like reverse sweep, lap shot. and the ability to clear the field. There’s no panic of any sorts. There’s something unique.”

KKR veteran Robin Uthappa will be Karthik’s deputy. and Mysore said: “He (Uthappa) has been there with us for so many years. There’s a lot of good combination of continuity and change for us.”

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