Tuesday, March 31, 2009

KKR to leave for South Africa without announcing squad

Kolkata, March 30 (IANS) Strange are the ways of the Kolkata Knight Riders. While it’s a normal practice for any team going abroad to announce the squad before leaving the shores, the Shah Rukh Khan-owned Indian Premier League (IPL) team feels otherwise.

Ahead of the scheduled deparutre for South Africa Tuesday, the KKR management also refused to disclose how many players will be part of the final squad or how many players will fly at a later date.

“Well, it’s a new country, the conditions will be different. We don’t want to bring all our options into the open,” said KKR CEO Joy Bhattacharya.

Bhattacharya said several players didn’t have a passport. “We want to take as many players as we can,” he replied when asked how many players will be flown in to South Africa in the first batch Tuesday.

The KKR, which had started a camp ahead of the IPL a week back, wrapped up their preparations in India Monday with a net session at the Eden Gardens.

KKR begin their campaign April 19.

The tune-up was marred by a controversy after cricket operations manager John Buchanan unveiled his plan for multiple skippers, thereby deposing local boy Sourav Ganguly from sole captaincy. The former Aussie coach named Brendon McCullum, Chris Gayle, Brad Hodge and Ganguly as his four skippers.

Unhappy at being pushed out from his coveted position, Ganguy hit back with a series of media interviews where he made veiled criticism on Buchanan’s move.

The KKR pool of 28:

Brendon McCullum, Chris Gayle, Ricky Ponting, David Hussey, Brad Hodge, Moises Henriques, Angelo Matthews, Ajantha Mendis, Charl Langeveldt, Mashrafe Mortaza, Sourav Ganguly, Ajit Agarkar, Murali Kartik, Ishant Sharma, Akash Chopra, Cheteshwar Pujara, Yashpal Singh, Iqbal Abdullah, Laxmi Ratan Shukla, Wriddhiman Saha, Ashok Dinda, Debabrata Das, Mohnish Parmar, Anureet Singh, Arindam Ghosh, Sourav Sarkar, Shoaib Sheikh and Sunny Singh.

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