Shikhar Dhawan's Punjab Kings are set to begin their campaign in the upcoming Indian Premier League against the Kolkata Knight Riders on March 1. The squad will be relying on World Cup-winning coach Trevor Bayliss and new captain Dhawan to remove their perennial underachievers' tag. Ahead of the 2023 IPL, the team has to suffer a huge blow as power-hitter Liam Livingstone will be missing the first game.
"He is out of the first game at least as the ECB is conducting scans to determine his fitness status. He should be available from the second game onwards," an IPL source told PTI.
Livingstone will miss the opening game as he is yet to get a fitness clearance from the ECB after recovering from a knee injury he suffered in December.
Livingstone, who is a key member of the Punjab Kings squad for his all-around abilities has not played any cricket since December 1 due to a knee injury in Pakistan. He posted a video on Wednesday on his social media where he is seen batting in the nets.
In the 2022 edition of IPL, Livingstone had his best-ever season in the IPL as he amassed 437 runs in 14 games at an average of 36.42 and a sensational strike rate of 182.08. He had also picked up six wickets.
Punjab finished sixth in the past four seasons and reached their only final back in the year in 2014. This year, the team will want to win their maiden title.
Punjab Kings squad:
Shikhar Dhawan (captain), Matthew Short, Prabhsimran Singh (wk), Bhanuka Rajapaksa, Jitesh Sharma (wk), Shahrukh Khan, Sikandar Raza, Raj Bawa, Rishi Dhawan, Liam Livingstone, Atharva Taide, Arshdeep Singh, Nathan Ellis, Baltej Singh, Sam Curran, Kagiso Rabada, Harpreet Brar, Rahul Chahar, Harpreet Bhatia, Vidwath Kaverappa, Shivam Singh, Mohit Rathee.
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