Kolkata Knight Riders have surprised everyone, they have named Nitish Rana as the stand-in captain for IPL 2023. The left-hander replaces Shreyas Iyer, who will miss the start of the season due to an injury. Rana is an attacking left-handed batter, who also is very hand with his off-spinners, he has been a part of the franchise for the last 5 years and has contributed with his all-round performance in each of the five seasons. Rana has experience of leading Delhi teams in the Syed Mushtaq Ali trophy and is not a stranger to this role.
Shreyas Iyer suffered a back injury during the fourth Test against Australia in the decent concluded test series. Andre Russell, Sunil Narine and Tim Southee were the other candidates who could have taken this role but Kolkata Knight Riders have decided to go with an Indian player. Nitish Rana has also represented India in two T20Is and an ODI as well. The management however remains hopeful that Iyer will recover soon and get back to the team.
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“While we are hopeful that Shreyas will recover and participate at some stage in the IPL 2023 edition, we feel fortunate that Nitish, with the captaincy experience having led his state side in white ball cricket and the IPL experience he has had with KKR since 2018, will do a great job, We are also confident that under Head Coach Chandrakant Pandit and the support staff, he will get all the support needed off the field, and the highly experienced leaders in the squad will provide all support that Nitish may need on the field. We wish him the best in his new role and Shreyas a full and speedy recovery.” said the Kolkata Knight Riders’ team management.
KKR with a new Captain-Coach combination
KKR will enter the IPL 2023 with a new captain-coach combination. Chandrakant Pandit was named the new head coach for the franchise, taking over from Brendon McCullum who quit his job at the franchise last year, to take up the role with the England national cricket team. Chandrakant Pandit has a brilliant record in Indian domestic cricket, he has won six Ranji Trophy titles with different state teams, including leading Madhya Pradesh to their maiden title last year. It will be interesting to see how the Knight Riders perform under this new combination.