Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) have appointed Shreyas Iyer as their captain for the 2024 edition of the Indian Premier League (IPL).
They have also named Nitish Rana as their vice-captain for the next season forming a core leadership group for the future. The franchise made the official announcement on X, formerly Twitter, with CEO Venky Mysore confirming the development.
For the unversed, KKR had splurged a massive amount of INR 12.25 crore to secure Shreyas Iyer in the mega auction ahead of IPL 2022 and made him skipper. KKR finished seventh that season with six wins and eight losses in 14 outings even as their newly appointed captain Iyer mustered 401 runs in 14 innings at a strike rate of 134.56 with three fifties to his name.
However, the Mumbai batter got injured just before IPL 2023 and was ruled out of the entire season. This is when Nitish Rana stepped in to lead but couldn’t help the side qualify for the playoffs for the second consecutive season.
Ahead of the IPL 2024 auction, KKR decided to retain Shreyas Iyer and has reappointed him at the helm. Venky Mysore expressed his delight at the return of their full-time captain and showed faith in him to take the side to the glory this time around.
Shreyas Iyer named skipper
“It was indeed unfortunate that Shreyas missed IPL 2023 due to injury. We are delighted that he's back and at the helm as Captain. The way he has worked hard to recover from his injury and the form he has displayed is a testament to his character,” Mysore said in the official statement.
“We are also grateful that Nitish had agreed to step into Shreyas's shoes last season and did a great job. There's no doubt Nitish as Vice Captain will support Shreyas in every possible way for the benefit of Team KKR.”
Meanwhile, Shreyas Iyer is also looking forward to leading the side again after missing out on in the previous season.
“I believe the last season presented us with several challenges, including my absence due to injury. Nitish did a great job not only filling in for me but also with his commendable leadership. I am delighted that KKR has named him Vice Captain. No doubt it will strengthen the leadership group,” he said.
As for Nitish Rana, this is a good chance for him to showcase his skills as he continues to be part of the leadership group of KKR.
He scored 413 runs in 14 innings at an average of close to 32 and a strike-rate of 140.95. KKR seems to be looking at him as one of the long-term players having picked him in the IPL 2022 auction for INR 8 crore.
Rana has played for India in 1 ODI and 2 T20Is but has the experience of playing 105 matches in the IPL where he has scored 2594 runs at a strike-rate of 135.25 with 18 fifties to his name.
If groomed properly, Rana can even turn out to be the future captain of KKR but as of now, he will be keen on lending his support to Iyer in IPL 2024.