Kings XI Punjab have made quite a few changes to their squad for IPL 2020 but one thing that it is unlikely to be changed is their opening combination. In IPL 2019, KXIP possessed one of the most dangerous opening combinations in KL Rahul and Chris Gayle. Rahul and Gayle gave KXIP strong starts last season and at times won matches single-handedly. Talking about IPL 2020, along with Rahul and Gayle, KXIP will have other options as well for the opening spots. Here are five players who can open the innings for KXIP in IPL 2020.
#5 Mandeep Singh
In the past few seasons Mandeep Singh has batted in the middle-order first for Royal Challengers Bangalore during his time with the franchise during 2015-18 and then for the Kings in IPL 2019. Mandeep has had decent success opening the innings during his first stint with the Kings. Owing to his past record as an opener, the Kings will know that they can fall back on Mandeep if needed.
#4 Jimmy Neesham
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Jimmy Neesham can be a choice for the opener's spot to Kings XI Punjab. Neesham was bought by the Kings on virtue of his impressive recent form. The New Zealand all-rounder normally bats in the lower-middle order and is used as a finisher. However, to take the opposition by surprise, Kings can exercise the move of opening the innings with Neesham.
#3 Mayank Agarwal
After having a below-par season in 2018, Mayank Agarwal came back quite well in 2019. Agarwal scored 332 runs in 13 games in IPL 2020, striking at 141.88. This despite batting at number 3, which is not his preferred batting position. Agarwal, who is an opener by trait, had to bat at number 3 due to the presence of Rahul and Gayle. Agarwal would love to get a long run as the opener in IPL 2020 and get in reckoning for a place in India's World T20 squad.
#2 Chris Gayle
We will see Chris Gayle back in action in the IPL once again. The Universe Boss has done exceptionally well in the past two years after moving to Kings XI Punjab. While he scored 368 runs at an average of 40.88 in IPL 2018, Gayle plundered 490 runs at an average of 40.83 in IPL 2019. The Kings will hope that Gayle carries his good IPL form in the upcoming season.
#1 KL Rahul
KL Rahul has been Mr.Consistent for Kings XI Punjab. Rahul hit 659 runs at an average of 54.91 in 2018 and 593 runs at an average of 53.90 in 2019. Owing to his consistency with the bat, Rahul was appointed the captain of the Kings for the forthcoming season. Rahul's confidence will be sky-high after his sensational form for India in limited-overs cricket.
Published 17 Feb 2020, 08:52 IST