After Chennai Super Kings and Mumbai Indians, Kolkata Knight Riders are the most successful franchise in the history of IPL with two titles to their name. Whenever a fan of IPL comes across the name KKR, the first thing that comes to his mind will be the faces of supremely talented foreign stalwarts such as Sunil Narine and Andre Russell. KKR have always built their team around star overseas players and this trend is set to continue with franchise roping in the likes of Eoin Morgan and Pat Cummins in the auctions.
However, a few of the foreigners bought by the Knight Riders have disappointed deeply and have failed to find a regular spot in the playing XI due to a combination of injuries, age, and poor form.
Almost everyone have forgotten that these gifted cricketers were once part of the KKR outfit. This list consists of four such foreigners who failed to live up to their potential and ended up playing only one game for Kolkata Knight Riders.
#4 Darren Bravo
Darren Bravo made waves in Caribbean first-class cricket as a teenager with his stylish stroke-making and an eye for big centuries. He was expected to shoulder the legacy of his uncle Brian Lara and despite the immense hype that surrounded him as a youngster, not a single IPL franchise brought him. When KKR bought him during the 2017 auction, a few eyebrows were raised as he had endured a roller coaster ride in international cricket.
Also see – MI team
He played his only IPL game to date against Rising Pune Supergiants in the 2017 edition of the IPL. Chasing 183, Robin Uthappa’s heroics meant that Darren Bravo did not have enough time to showcase his talent. He scored 6 runs and remained not out as Kolkata Knight Riders registered a comfortable victory. KKR management preferred Nathan Coulter-Nile in place of Bravo for the next game and he was released by the franchise after only one season.
#3 Brad Haddin
Former Australian wicket-keeping batsmen, Brad Haddin made his debut against Royal Challengers Bangalore at the Eden Gardens. He opened alongside Jacques Kallis and made 18 runs from 11 balls which included two fours and a maximum. He was dismissed by left-arm spinner Syed Mohammad while trying to play a lofted drive over the mid-off region.
At that point, he surely wouldn’t have thought that it will be the last ball he will face in the IPL. He was dropped in favour of Ryan ten Doeschate for the next game and the presence of Shreevats Goswami meant KKR did not require his service behind the stumps for the rest of the season. Curiously, he was retained by the franchise for the next season but did not feature in a single game. He was finally released at the end of the 2013 IPL auction and was roped in recently as the assistant coach of Sunrisers Hyderabad. He has played 42 T20I matches for Australia and scored over 400 runs.
#2 Joe Denly
The English all-rounder was bought by KKR at his base price in the IPL 2019 auction and made his debut against the Delhi Daredevils. The main reason for his selection was the vast amount of experience and his outstanding performance as a captain for the English County, Kent. He had the worst possible start to his IPL career as he was dismissed for a golden duck by a beautiful inswinger from Ishant Sharma in the very first ball of the match.
Even though he is regarded as a batting all-rounder, he did not get a chance to roll his arm over in that match. He failed to make use of a golden opportunity and Narine replaced him in the next KKR match. He was released by KKR before the 2020 IPL auction. He did not find any takers in the auction but there is a good possibility of him playing another game in the IPL as he continues to be a regular in England’s limited-over squads. He has failed to impress in the recent T20I series against South Africa.
#1 Mashrafe Mortaza
The former captain of Bangladesh made his debut for KKR against Deccan Chargers in 2009. KKR batted first and scored 160 runs with Mashrafe Mortaza getting two runs in two balls after coming in to bat at the number 6 position. He had a horror show with the ball as his spell of 58 runs in four overs was the difference between the two teams at the end. Adam Gilchrist hit him for back-to-back sixes in his first over in the IPL.
He made a decent comeback as he conceded 18 runs in his next two overs. He was trusted to bowl the last over of the game with KKR having a clear advantage as Chargers required 21 runs. However, Mortaza was at the receiving end of a dramatic onslaught by a then-young Rohit Sharma and ended up conceding 26 runs. This remains the most expensive final over in an IPL chase along with Ashok Dinda’s final over against RCB in 2014.
Published 05 Mar 2020, 09:56 IST