Venkatesh Iyer of the Kolkata Knight Riders has been a fantastic addition to the club. He has not only made significant contributions with the bat, but he has also demonstrated his versatility with the ball. Furthermore, his inclusion at the top of the order appeared to have given the Knight Riders the momentum that they lacked in the India leg of the IPL 2021.
While Kolkata was in the bottom half of the table due to a dismal performance in the tournament before it had to be delayed midway due to COVID-19, they suddenly find themselves in with a chance to qualify for the Playoffs due to victories over elite clubs in the UAE. Venkatesh Iyer has been instrumental in those victories, having already scored two half-centuries and a forty in five innings.
Former India cricketer Sanjay Manjrekar predicts that Iyer’s big-hitting skills will fetch about INR 12-14 crores in the mega auction that will take place ahead of the IPL 2022.
Iyer’s Checklist A fantastic track record: Manjrekar
“I believe Venkatesh Iyer would receive 12 to 14 crores since this is not a fluke show.” I was looking at his First-class numbers, and his List A record is excellent. “His average is 47 strikes at 92, 93, and his domestic T20 record is also amazing,” Manjrekar told ESPNCricinfo.
“Once again, the strike rate is quite high, with an average of 37. This is a player who understands how to bat. He has a first-class batting average of 36 and is also a bowler. And in the most recent encounter, he has shown that he can bowl difficult overs as well. So he is someone who will command a premium price,” he added.
KKR sorely requires its captain to be fired
Having said that, despite Iyer’s 67 in the match against Punjab Kings on Friday at the Dubai International Stadium, Kolkata lost by 5 wickets. They would badly need their captain Eoin Morgan to fire, as he has been severely out of form this season, departing for a tenth single-digit score against Punjab.
If Morgan is forced to leave, Kolkata will have to recruit a new captain at this late point of the competition, which could backfire given that the business end of the tournament isn’t far away.
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