Cricket   |   March 27, 2023

IPL 2023: Nitish Rana appointed Kolkata Knight Riders interim skipper; To lead side in Shreyas Iyer’s absence

Two-time IPL champions Kolkata Knight Riders have named Nitish Rana as their interim captain as Shreyas Iyer, the team’s usual skipper, recuperates from a back injury that will keep him out of action for the first half of the IPL season at least. 

Rana’s name was being discussed alongside West Indian veteran Sunil Narine, as they were the two most probable candidates to lead the team. The Indian southpaw has been chosen over Narine, possibly due to the latter’s torrid time in charge of the Abu Dhabi Knight Riders, who finished last among six teams in the first ever ILT20. Under Narine’s leadership, the Knight Riders won just one game, losing eight. Enhance your IPL viewing experience with the best odds from Empire777.

“While we are hopeful that Shreyas will recover and participate at some stage in the IPL 2023 edition, we feel fortunate that Nitish, with the captaincy experience of having led his state side in white-ball cricket and the IPL experience he has had with KKR since 2018, will do a great job. We are also confident that under head coach Chandrakant Pandit and the support staff, he will get all the support needed off the field, and the highly experienced leaders in the squad will provide all support that Nitish may need on the field. We wish him the best in his new role and Shreyas a full and speedy recovery.” an official statement from KKR read. 

In 12 T20 matches for his state side Delhi in the Syed Mushtaq Ali Trophy, Rana guided them to eight victories and four losses. He was acquired by KKR prior to the 2018 season and has remained with the franchise consecutively, before the mega auctions in 2022, when the side made sure to buy him back. 

The 29-year old has his fair share of experience in the IPL, scoring 1744 runs in 74 matches, at a good tick, striking at 135. Rana scored 361 runs at a healthy strike rate of 143.82 last season, ranking second among KKR’s run scorers after Shreyas. The squad, however, had a forgettable season, finishing seventh in the competition with six victories and eight defeats. Follow all updates from IPL 2023 only on Empire777 Sports.