Kolkata Knight Riders had a fairly disappointing run in IPL 2021. They could still make a strong return once the tournament resumes. Nevertheless, the major issue for them in IPL 2021 was the lack of intent and clueless tactics. They could reverse this in IPL 2022. For this, a list must be made as to the players whom KKR can target at IPL 2022 mega auction.
Although the situation looks gloomy, KKR still has the resources to become a strong team in IPL 2022. As per the previous edition’s retainment rules, KKR can keep hold of Shubman Gill, Andre Russell and Varun CV and build the entire squad around them. On that note, here are seven players whom KKR can target at IPL 2022 mega auction.
1. David Warner
A poor batting performance in the power play led to KKR’s loss in many games. If they can get a guy like Warner, it will be pretty much problem solved for KKR. Warner is unlikely to get retained by SRH as they could go with Rashid Khan and Kane Williamson. If Warner comes to KKR, Gill can play more freely and drop to the anchor role. The Aussie will also bring captaincy experience, which the management could make use of.
2. Ishan Kishan
If Dinesh Karthik is released, KKR must plan for a replacement. They can target Ishan Kishan, a younger and more fearless player than DK. He can both open the innings and play in the middle-order. Ishan is unlikely to be retained by Mumbai Indians, and this could make him available at the auctions. KKR should therefore go for him.
3. Mohammed Shami
The lack of experienced Indian bowlers hasn’t helped KKR. This aspect has always called for a foreign pacer, which compromised with the team balance when the batting was not performing. To plug this gap, KKR can target Mohammed Shami. Being a local boy, Shami would be best suited for the role.
4. T Natarajan
T Natarajan is another pace option for KKR. If SRH does not retain him, Nattu can be targeted by KKR. The Kolkata unit did not have a reliable left-arm pace option in IPL 2021. Nattu is one of the best in the country and will help KKR immensely if he joins them.
5. Moeen Ali
Moeen Ali is one of the players KKR can target at the IPL 2022 mega auction. For CSK, Moeen showed which position is the best option for him to bat. He is good against spinners, which will help them on a pitch like Eden Gardens. Ali’s right-arm off-spin will also benefit the franchise.
6. Glenn Maxwell
Eoin Morgan was a disappointment, both with the bat and the captaincy duties in IPL 2021. Hence, he may not be retained by KKR. The franchise could instead target the in-form Glenn Maxwell, whom RCB could struggle to retain because of other priorities in the franchise. Maxi can play at No.4 and can offer better stability, at least based on current form.
7. Axar Patel
Balance has been an issue in recent KKR squads. At times, they had to play Pat Cummins at No.7. Although the Aussie did well with the bat, he is definitely not reliable at No.7. The franchise could set sights on Axar Patel to solve this issue. He is a complete all-rounder who is improving his game every season. Therefore, KKR must look to add him to their roster.