The Kolkata franchise paid a whopping Rs 15.50 crore for Pat Cummins, making him the costliest foreign player in the history of IPL auctions
New Delhi: Former India opener Gautam Gambhir believes his former Indian Premier League (IPL) franchise Kolkata Knight Riders doesn't have enough back-up options and the team management could have gone for all-rounders in the players' auction to provide the squad more depth.
The Kolkata franchise paid a whopping Rs 15.50 crore for Pat Cummins, making him the costliest foreign player in the history of IPL auctions. Besides, they also spent big on England's World Cup-winning captain Eoin Morgan (Rs 5.25 crore) and Indian spinner Varun Chakravarthy (Rs 4 crore).
"If you look at the squad as a whole, there is no backup for Andre Russell, Eoin Morgan, Sunil Narine who is a one of a kind bowler. If Eoin Morgan suffers an injury, the team has no middle order overseas batsman," Gambhir said while speaking at Star Sports' 'Cricket Live' show.
"The management could have gone for a Mitchell Marsh or Marcus Stoinis who would have given more depth to the squad, so you have to hope all these players are there for the entire series.
Gambhir said KKR don't have the bench strength to deal with any injury crisis in the top order.
"If Pat Cummins suffers an injury, there is a replacement with Lockie Ferguson but with the top order there is no replacement for Kolkata Knight Riders," said the stylish left-hander, who led KKR to two titles in 2012 and 2014.
Gambhir hoped that Cummins will justify his hefty paycheck by single-handedly winning KKR a few matches.
"The positive part about Pat Cummins is that you can expect him to take wickets with the new ball because he has a good swing and he bowls at a good pace, he might be a concern for the death overs but he has good bowling skills," Gambhir said.
"I hope he plays all the matches and makes the team win 3-4 matches single-handedly because he has been bought for such a high amount.
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A number of former players also questioned Mumbai’s decision to splurge such a huge amount on one player. Kapil Dev added that Kishan felt the heat of the price tag and he played with the pressure of having to perform.
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Chris Gayle has scored a total of 4965 runs in 142 appearances at an outstanding 145-plus strike rate.