Team India's middle-order batsman Dinesh Karthik has been appointed as the new skipper of Kolkata Knight Riders ahead of the 11th edition of the Indian Premier League. The Shah Rukh Khan-owned Kolkata franchise took to social media to announce the news on March 4.
Karthik, who was bought for a massive 7.4 crore in the IPL 2018 auctions, was one of the front-runners to lead the side after the Purple cramp decided not to retain or buy back Gautam Gambhir who will now play for his home side Delhi Daredevils.
Karthik was amongst the names such as Robin Uthappa and Chris Lynn to be taken into consideration as captain. The Australian swashbuckler, unfortunately, suffered an injury during a T20I against New Zealand in a Tri-Nation series. The Australian power-hitter's presence in the opening matches is highly doubtful.
Karthik, who plays second fiddle to MS Dhoni as wicket-keeper in the limited overs format, has experience in captaining after a small stint for Tamil Nadu as he led the state to a title triumph in the Vijay Hazare Trophy in 2009-2010 and had also led the India Red side where they won the Duleep Trophy last year. It was also in the shortest format of the game where Karthik led the TUTI Patriots to win the Tamil Nadu Premier League title in the 2016 edition.
The middle-order batsman has played for Gujarat Lions in the 10 edition of the league last year, smashing 361 runs at an impressive average of 36.1. Karthik also played a key role in helping Mumbai Indians lift their first IPL trophy in the sixth edition of the league.
Karthik helped the three-time champions by scoring 510 runs and successfully effected 14 dismissals. He has also played for the Kings XI Punjab and the Royal Challengers Bangalore.
The Team India batsman has been impressive in the limited overs format and is known as an unpredictable fuse which can light up immediately once Karthik gets going.
The two-time champions Kolkata Knight Riders will begin their campaign against Royal Challengers Bangalore at home from April 8.