Kolkata Knight Riders have failed to qualify for the playoffs in last two years.
Karthik handed over the captaincy to Morgan in IPL 2020 midway.
Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR), one of the strongest sides in the IPL, failed to find consistency in the recently concluded tournament and was unable to make it in top four despite coming too close.
With the likes of Eoin Morgan, Dinesh Karthik, Andre Russell, Sunil Narine and Pat Cummins in their unit, KKR were in the playoffs race till the final day of the league stages but saw Sunrisers Hyderabad (SRH) eliminating them with a thumping win over Mumbai Indians (MI).
Karthik stepped down from captaincy midway to hand over the duties to Morgan. KKR had won 4 matches out of seven before Karthik made his call and needed another four wins to make it to the playoffs. They failed to do so, and Morgan’s appointment as the captain didn’t work well.
The Knight Riders have now failed to reach the final four from last two IPL seasons and will be looking to bounce back strongly next year.
Ahead of the mega auction for IPL 2021, former Indian cricketer Aakash Chopra has suggested three players whom KKR should retain for the next season. In a video uploaded on his YouTube channel, Chopra said the Knight Riders should release all the big names – Narine, Karthik, Cummins and Morgan – in order to build a team looking at the future.
Chopra believes young Shubman Gill can lead the side if provided proper support through the coaching staff. The cricketer-turned-commentator gave the example of Shreyas Iyer, who was appointed as Delhi Capitals’ captain in 2018 and has led them to playoffs in the last two seasons.
According to Chopra, KKR should retain three players – Gill, Varun Chakravarthy and Andre Russell, and appoint Gill as the new captain.
The 21-year-old Gill has been with the Kolkata-based franchise since the 2018 edition and has scored 939 runs in 41 games at an average of 33.84.
“Retain Shubman Gill, Varun Chakravarthy, and Andre Russell and make Gill the captain. The way Delhi Capitals did with Shreyas Iyer, gave him a strong coaching staff and groomed him for a better future. KKR should not let go of Gill if they feel he is captaincy material as he might get into some other team and in the coming years he might replicate what Rohit Sharma has done for Mumbai Indians,” said Chopra.
“KKR have a very young and exciting talent in their hand in the form of Gill and they should make him the captain if they see leadership qualities in him. Not a great idea to make Eoin Morgan the captain and he should be released. He can be bought back through RTM if KKR wants him,” he added.