Despite being prone to injury, Andre Russell’s stock in the T20 cricket is still going strong in a bullish fashion. He is among rare breeds of players who can single-handedly change the outcome of the game.
Last season in the Indian Premier League (IPL), Russell had snatched too many victories from the jaws of defeat for Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR).
The franchise hierarchy and fans must be expecting something similar this year in challenging conditions of the UAE.
Gautam Gambhir, the former KKR skipper, feels that not many bowlers, barring two or three, can trouble the hard-hitting Jamaican.
Gambhir named Jasprit Bumrah among one of them since the latter did cause difficulties to Russel last year.
“There might be two or three of them in the IPL who could trouble him but not beyond that. I don’t see bowlers other than probably someone like Jasprit Bumrah who can actually trouble Andre Russell,” Gambhir said on the ‘Cricket Connected’ show for Star Sports.
Gambhir speaks on KKR’s batting-order conundrum
Russell’s batting position is an equally debated topic for the KKR. David Hussey, former Australian cricketer and KKR mentor, believes that Russel should bat higher up the order.
Gambhir thinks the franchise can be a little flexible in their approach since they also have to make full use of Eoin Morgan’s hitting prowess.
“Obviously, if you are in great hitting form, quality of cricket and quality of bowling might be different but Andre Russell is a confidence player. If his confidence is high, then the bowling does not matter.”
“If someone goes in such big-hitting form to the IPL, I want to see how KKR uses him. Because now they have Eoin Morgan as well, who is in great form. So if you have two such international players, who are in great hitting form, left-handed and right-handed, then you can be a little flexible,” concluded Gambhir.