Team Owner(s) Preity Zinta, Ness Wadia, Mohit Burman & Karan Paul
Prominent Players Shaun Marsh & Kumar Sangakkara
Kings XI Punjab is a franchise based in the city of Mohali, who plays in India’s domestic T20 competition, Indian Premier League(IPL). The team generally plays their home games at the IS Bindra Stadium in Mohali, although they have played some of their home games at the HPCA Stadium in Dharamshala.
Kings XI Punjab is one of the original franchises to have played the inaugural edition of the IPL but are yet to win the tournament. They reached the final of the tournament in 2014 under George Bailey, but lost the game to the Kolkata Knight Riders.
They reached the semi-finals of the 2014 Champions League T20 but lost to eventual champions Chennai Super Kings.
Over the years, the side from Mohali have been led by some of the most charismatic cricketers like Yuvraj Singh, Kumar Sangakkara, Virender Sehwag, Adam Gilchrist and Glenn Maxwell.
The franchise was formed in 2008, and is owned by KPH Dream Cricket Private Limited, a company formed by Bollywood actress, Preity Zinta, Ness Wadia, Mohit Burman and Karan Paul.
The team from Punjab uses the Northern part of India as its catchment area. The franchise played their first game against Chennai Super Kings in the IPL and tasted their first victory against the Mumbai Indians.
Kings XI Punjab have not won the IPL title till date, and had their most successful season in 2014, when the team finished the league phase at the top of the table with 11 victories out of 14 matches.
The franchise was led admirably by George Bailey after he took over from David Hussey. Under Bailey, Kings XI played a fearless form of cricket which has remained the identity of the side since then.
After losing the first qualifier, the team won the second qualifier against Chennai Super Kings to set up a date with Kolkata Knight Riders in the final at Bengaluru. They posted an imposing 199/4 largely due to Wriddhiman Saha’s 115 off just 55 balls. However, Manish Pandey’s 94 for KKR prevented a first IPL win for Punjab.
The side reached the semifinals of the competition in the inaugural edition in 2008 after finishing second in the league phase. They lost to Chennai Super Kings in the semifinal by a huge margin of nine wickets.
Leg-spinner Piyush Chawla has played the most number of matches for the side. He represented the Punjabi team in 87 games from 2008-2013 and also remains the highest wicket-taker for the franchise with 84 scalps.
Career trajectory of the club
After ten years of the Indian Premier League, Kings XI Punjab remains one of the few profitable franchises of the competition. According to a report, the franchise earned Rs. 26.5 crore from sponsorship revenues in 2016. The franchise has earned a huge amount of profits from their stadium gate receipts alone, owing to the loyal and passionate fanbase of the team.
Although, the franchise remains one of the most stable off the field, they’re on the field performances have been far from satisfactory over the years. They have finished last in the competition on three occasions which is the most by any franchise.
In 2010, the IPL governing council decided to terminate the contract of the franchise due to charges of transgression of shareholding and ownership norms. The governing council said that the share holding pattern for the franchise was different as many shares were transferred to different people without the permission of the council. The franchise was later reinstated by the High Court as they found the report by the BCCI erroneous and flawed.
The fans of Kings XI Punjab are one of the most loyal ones among the IPL franchises. Inspite of having largely under-achieved throughout the years, the fans of the franchise flock their home stadium at every home game.
This is largely reflected by the fact that the franchise has almost 1.59 million followers on Twitter. They also have massive following on other social media sites like Facebook and Instagram. According to the official IPL report, 45,853 tweets were made last year with the #KXIP.
One of the biggest reasons behind the strong connect between the franchise and the fans is the way the team plays on the field. The team bears the tagline ‘Live Punjabi Be Punjabi’. Their playing style reflect the fearless form of cricket which bears identity with the fearless Punjabis.
In 2010, a fan club of the Kings XI Punjab named Lion’s Den was formed.