Murali Vijay is Kings XI Punjab captain

Explaining the reason for making Murali Vijay the captain in the place of David Miller, the KIngs XI Punjab coach Sanjay Bangar said: "We felt that David’s batting (6 matches, 76 runs) was suffering because of the extra responsibility. We felt it was affecting him. So the decision was just to free him from the additional responsibilities."

David Miller, mentor Virender Sehwag and Murali Vijay at a Kings XI Punjab training session. Vijay has replaced Miller as the team's captain.   -  AKHILESH KUMAR

Kings XI Punjab has changed its captain mid-season; it has taken away the leadership role from South African David Miller and given it for the rest of the Vivo-IPL-9 to Tamil Nadu and India opener Murali Vijay.

Explaining the reason for the change, coach Sanjay Bangar said: “We felt that David’s batting (6 matches, 76 runs) was suffering because of the extra responsibility. We felt it was affecting him. So the decision was just to free him from the additional responsibilities. He’s an integral part of the team. We are looking forward to his contribution with the bat. As a coach I had to communicate the decision to him.  He took it in the right spirit. This is all for the team’s interest.’’

Bangar further said: “The IPL is such a format in which the best of players sit out.  And it’s not the first instance wherein captaincy has been changed mid-way.  There have been past instances as well, probably eight or nine times. Basically we are looking to turn things around. It’s a step in that direction.’’

He also said that Vijay was also very keen to take up the role. “He has done it very successfully while leading Tamil Nadu in the 2009-10 season. But after that he has not been available for Tamil Nadu on a regular basis. He has also settled into the team (KXIP) nicely which was not the case last year.’’

Vijay has scored 143 runs in six matches for KXIP in the ongoing season.

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