IPL 2021: KKR depart for UAE

Two-time Indian Premier League (IPL) champions Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) departed for Abu Dhabi from Mumbai on Friday evening ahead of the resumption of the 14th edition of the cash-rich league.

KKR Pacer Shivam Mavi posted an Instagram story of a selfie featuring him, Kuldeep Yadav, Kamlesh Nagarkoti, and Rahul Tripathi in PPE kits inside.

The KKR members had been serving quarantine in Mumbai since last few days.

The Indian members of the team along with the team management and support staff are the first ones to depart for the Gulf. After landing their, they will again be quarantined and after the completion of it, they will be allowed to kick-off their preparation for the second leg.

Earlier, the MS Dhoni-led Chennai Super Kings (CSK) and Mumbai Indians (MI) were the first team to land in the UAE. Both the sides are already training in UAE while Delhi Capitals, who were the third to reach, will be out of quarantine soon.

KKR batter Sheldon Jackson told the franchise’s official website: “The first half didn’t go our way that doesn’t mean this half won’t go our way. If in 2014 we have written history then I don’t think why we can’t write history now again.”

Meanwhile, KKR spinner Kuldeep Yadav, who recently toured Sri Lanka with the national team, said, “Break is something that’s good for a team, especially because we didn’t have the momentum in the first half. This is a good opportunity for us.”

Earlier on Thursday, KKR’s star wicketkeeper-batsman Dinesh Karthik had said that he will depart to join his squad in the UAE after completing his commentary commitments for Sky Sports for the ongoing third Test between England and India at Leeds.

“The IPL starts in two weeks’ time. I may prepare and do as well as I can,” Karthik had said.

Confirming that he will leave the commentary panel after the third Test, he said: “I won’t be here for the remaining two Tests. You guys have been good to me.”

Karthik, 36, has amassed 123 runs from seven games during the first leg of the 14th edition.

The Knight Riders are currently at seventh place in the points table with four points from seven matches.

KKR is scheduled to resume their campaign against the Virat Kohli-led Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) in Abu Dhabi on September 20.

Earlier, the lucrative league was forced to be postponed midway in May this year due to the rising number of Covid cases inside the tournament’s bubble.

Later, the BCCI decided to host the remainder of the league in the UAE.

Significantly, KKR have snapped New Zealand’s Tim Southee, who will replace Australia’s Pat Cummins for the second leg of the 14th edition in the UAE.

News Desk

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