The Kolkata Knight Riders struggled for glory for the first three years of Indian Premier League. The Shah Rukh Khan-owned franchise had absolutely nothing to cheer for except for Brendon McCullum’s destructive knock in the opening game of the opening season. The management, then, decided to bring in Gautam Gambhir, making him the most expensive player in the IPL history back then. The Delhi batsman put together a highly efficient team and led the franchise to two trophies within three years. However, if the reports are to be believed KKR is already thinking about the future and is set to part ways with their skipper.
The team is instead, planning to retain Manish Pandey who is currently a part of the Indian team and is doing well in the middle-order. However, Gambhir might not be the only player to face the axe as a number of stars like Robin Uthappa, Shakib Al Hasan and Yusuf Pathan may also have to look for new franchises.
As per the guidelines issued by the IPL governing council on December 6, a team can only retain a maximum number of 3 capped Indian players, 2 overseas players and 2 uncapped Indian players. Also, each team can consist of a maximum number of 25 players (up to 8 overseas players) and a minimum of 18.
KKR is expected to retain two of its West Indian stars: Andre Russell and Sunil Narine. The former had missed the last season of IPL, leaving a big void in the side while the latter has been a match-winner for KKR over the years.
Here are the IPL 2018 retained players KKR, as per reports:: Manish Pandey, Andre Russell and Sunil Narine.
As per the latest guidelines issued by the IPL governing council, each team can opt for up to five players by virtue of a combination of Player Retention (Pre Player Auction) and Right to Match (RTM) (during the Player Auction).
Among the other top Indian players, MS Dhoni is set to return to Chennai Super Kings with Suresh Raina and Ravindra Jadeja, Virat Kohli is likely to stay with Royal Challengers Bangalore while Rohit Sharma will once again lead the Mumbai Indians.
(The list will be updated as and when the names are made official)