KKR would’ve won more titles had they bought Russell earlier, says Gambhir

New Delhi, April 18 (IANS) Gautam Gambhir, former captain of the Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR), believes his IPL side would have won more Indian Premier League titles had hard-hitting West Indies all-rounder Andre Russell played more under him for the Kolkata-based franchise.

“Imagine Russell going for Rs 50 lakhs to KKR and Pawan Negi for Rs 8 crores to (Delhi) Daredevils. I probably wished that he (Russell) would have been there for seven years when I was playing, we would have certainly won one or two more,” Gambhir said while speaking on Star Sports ‘Cricket Connected’ show which airs every Saturday at 7 pm.

KKR became the IPL champions for the first time in 2012, defeating Chennai Super Kings in the final. They repeated the feat in 2014, defeating Kings XI Punjab.

Russell made his IPL debut with Delhi Daredevils in 2012. But sparse chances and injuries restricted his number of games to a handful for the first two editions.

Before 2014 edition, he was roped in by KKR. But he could feature in only a couple of games in that season. However, the tide changed for good in 2015 and it saw Russell score 326 runs at an astounding strike-rate of 192. He also starred with the ball and picked up 14 wickets.

The 2016 edition saw him perform predominantly with the ball as he picked 15 wickets besides scoring 188 runs. KKR made it to the play-offs but failed to make it to the finale.

After serving a one-year ban, the West Indies all-rounder ended up with 13 wickets and more than 300 runs in the 2018 season. In the last season, Russell scored a massive tally of 510 runs besides picking up 11 wickets.

In total, Russell has so far played 64 IPL matches in which he has scored 1,400 runs and picked up 55 wickets.


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