Veteran spinner Harbhajan Singh will make his debut for Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) as they were put to bat first by SunRisers Hyderabad (SRH) in their first match of the Indian Premier League (IPL) season at the M.A.Chidambaram Stadium on Sunday.
KKR is the third team that 40-year-old Harbhajan is playing for, having spent nine years between 2008 and 2017 with the Mumbai Indians and two years with Chennai Super Kings.
Captain Eoin Morgan said that KKR are hoping to do better than last year, when they missed out on a playoff spot due to inferior net run rate. “We missed out narrowly last year with qualifying so we will try and go one better this time. Our four foreign players are Russell, Shakib, Cummins and myself,” he said.
Warner, meanwhile said that SRH have chosen to rest Kane Williamson, choosing to go for an extra spinner in Mohammad Nabi.
“This wicket will play a little different, it’s a lot drier. There wasn’t much dew in the last training session, and so that won’t make much of a difference. We know what we can chase to be honest, and we prefer doing that. Our foreign players are myself, Rashid Khan, Nabi and Jonny Bairstow,” he said.
SunRisers Hyderabad: David Warner (captain), Jonny Bairstow, Wriddhiman Saha (wicketkeeper), Manish Pandey, Vijay Shankar, Abdul Samad, Mohammad Nabi, Rashid Khan, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, T Natarajan, Sandeep Sharma.
Kolkata Knight Riders: Shubman Gill, Rahul Tripathi, Nitish Rana, Eoin Morgan (captain), Dinesh Karthik (wicketkeeper), Andre Russell, Shakib Al Hasan, Pat Cummins, Harbhajan Singh, Prasidh Krishna, Varun Chakravarthy.