Dinesh Karthik to alter batting position in KKR

The newly-appointed skipper of Kolkata Knight Riders acknowledges it is tough to replace Gautam Gambhir, who won two titles.

KKR skipper Dinesh Karthik at the team jersey launch in Kolkata on Sunday.   -  PTI


New Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) captain Dinesh Karthik is aware of the franchise's expectations from him and is ready to shoulder the responsibility.

Karthik acknowledged that it was tough to replace former KKR captain Gautam Gambhir, who guided the side to two Indian Premier League (IPL) titles in 2012 and 2014 and three play-offs in 2011, 2016 and 2017.

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"What Gambhir has achieved for KKR is phenomenal. He has left a benchmark," Karthik said at the jersey launch of his team here on Sunday.

The seasoned wicketkeeper-batsman, who was picked by KKR for Rs 7.4 crore, said he would lead his side to achieve a decent finish. "Being the leader of the team, the management will expect from me the same. I am aware of the expectations. Yes, there will be pressure. As a captain, you are expected to at least go to the play-offs, that's the least anybody can expect.

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“I am at a stage where I can handle it and get the best out of the team."

Karthik, who recently won the Nidahas Trophy final for India, said he would look to take a different responsibility in the KKR batting order. "I will bat at a different position than where I batted for India. IPL is about dealing with tricky situation, handling pressure. Everybody is here to do his best and I am no different.”

Looking back at the Nidahas Trophy final, Karthik said, “It's been close to 10 days since that innings, things have moved on...When we play Bangladesh, it's a different kind of pressure. If you win, you are like 'Okay, you have won', but if you lose it's like 'Wake up, what are you doing'. “We had a good season and for us not to win that game would not have been nice. It was a great feeling.”

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