Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) chief mentor David Hussey has revealed that it is a part of the team's plans to hold back Andre Russell till death overs. The team think-tank wants the Jamaican all-rounder to go ballistic in the death overs. This didn’t happen on Saturday against the Rajasthan Royals (RR) as KKR managed 133 for nine in their 20 overs after batting first.
Against Chennai Super Kings (CSK) on Wednesday, Andre Russell’s 22-ball 54 gave KKR an outside chance to win from a near-impossible position. Despite being in form, he walked into bat in the 16th over against RR and managed a seven-ball nine.
When asked about Andre Russell’s batting position after the six-wicket defeat against RR, David Hussey said:
“We had a partnership going on at that stage when Andre Russell was due to come in next. With four odd overs to go, we back him to get us 30-40 runs off around 15 balls. In a perfect world, he can go at No.3 and make two hundred, I guess. But that wasn’t tonight.”
Andre Russell’s batting position has often been the subject of debate among fans and pundits over the past few seasons. With a strike rate of over 180, he leads the IPL all-time charts. Despite being KKR’s go-to player, he has often batted down the order with very little time to get set.
KKR to rethink batting strategy: David Hussey
Batting has led KKR down this season. With just one win from five matches, the franchise languishes at the bottom of the points table. Admitting the batting incompetence, David Hussey, a former Australia international and KKR all-rounder, stated:
“We could look at all strategies when it comes to our batting. We play Punjab Kings in a couple of days, and everything (all the options) is on the table.”
KKR have batters – Karun Nair, Gurkeerat Singh, Ben Cutting, Sheldon Jackson and Tim Seifert – warming the bench as the side eye changes in the games to follow.
From Mumbai, KKR will now fly to Ahmedabad to face Punjab Kings on Monday.