Kings XI Punjab (KXIP) are one of the most unfortunate teams of Indian Premier League as it have never won an IPL title. This season the franchise have bought 13 players which is the highest amongst the eight IPL teams.
Kings XI Punjab will begin their IPL 2019 campaign against Rajasthan Royals on March 25. Last year as well, under the captaincy of Ravichandran Ashwin, Punjab finished second from bottom, forcing the owners to make quite a few changes for the upcoming season. This time, they went into the auctions with the biggest budget of Rs 36.2 crore.
The Kings XI Punjab haven’t qualified for the playoffs since 2014 and to change the course of their journey thus season, Punjab-based team had spent a whopping amount of Rs 8.4 crore on the architect-turned cricketer Varun Chakravarthy, who is a mystery spinner from Tamil Nadu. The team had also spent a huge sum of money to rope in the England all-rounder Sam Curran, at Rs 7.2 crore.
Prabhsimran was another big signing for Kings XI Punjab as he was bought for massive Rs 4.8 crore. Apart from them, Kings XI have also bought players like Mohammad Shami (Rs 4.8 crore), Nicholas Pooran (Rs 4.2 crore) and Sarfaraz Khan (Rs 25 lakh) to strengthen their team. KXIP have also traded Mandeep Singh from Royal Challengers Bangalore.
Here’s a briefing of KXIP franchise for IPL 12:
- Purse: Rs 36.2 crore
- Remaining: Rs 3.7 crore
- Squad Size: 23
- Captain: Ravichandran Ashwin
- Players Bought: Moises Henriques, Nicholas Pooran, Varun Chakaravarthy, Sam Curran, Mohammad Shami, Sarfaraz Khan, Hardus Viljoen, Arshdeep Singh, Darshan Nalkande, Prabhsimran Singh, Agnivesh Ayachi, Harpreet Brar, Murugan Ashwin
- Players Retained: KL Rahul, Chris Gayle, Andrew Tye, Mayank Agarwal, Ankit Rajpoot, Mujeeb Ur Rahman, Karun Nair, David Miller and Ravichandran Ashwin
Among the overseas players, Kings XI Punjab will be featuring Sam Curran, Moises Henriques into their squad who are well-known for smashing the ball out of the bounds and also for breaking the stumps by their pace bowling attack. While Harpreet Brar and Agnivesh Ayachi will be the Indian all-rounders playing for KXIP this season.
With the likes of Chris Gayle and KL Rahul at the top, Punjab have one of the best opening combinations in the IPL. Mayank Agarwal is the third opener, however, he can bat at number three as well if needed. In the middle-order, the newcomers in the team, Mandeep Singh, Sarfaraz Khan, and Simran Singh, will complement the likes of David Miller and Karun Nair, who have been around for a while. The addition of Caribbean wicket-keeper batsman, Nicholas Pooran was one of the smarter picks by Punjab in the auction.
Among the pacers, KXIP will be featuring Indian sensation Mohammad Shami with the likes of Australian seamer Andrew Tye. Ankit Rajpoot, Darshan Nalkande and Hardus Viljoen are the other seamers in the line-up. The spin department will be led by captain Ravichandran Ashwin while Mujeeb will play a crucial role after his exceptional debut campaign last time around. The spin bowling section of KXIP will get the support from their newly bought, Varun Chakravarthy.