The 2023 Indian Premier League (IPL) got off to a good start when Lucknow Super Giants (LSG) beat Delhi Capitals (DC) in their first match on April 1. Now, they will play the four-time champions Chennai Super Kings (CSK) in Chennai on Monday, April 3. Notably, CSK lost to the defending champion Gujarat Titans (GT) in the first game of the tournament.
Before the game against CSK, KL Rahul, who is the captain of LSG, explained why the team hired Nicholas Pooran for the 2023 season. The first batter said that the team was looking for a player who could be explosive in the middle order and also have some finishing skills. He also said that buying Pooran was a big deal and that everyone on the team was very happy to have him.
“This year, we thought we needed someone in the middle order who could be explosive and also help us finish strong, so Nicholas Pooran was a big buy for us, and we were very excited again,” Rahul told Star Sports.
Former West Indies limited-overs captain Pooran was bought by LSG for a huge 16 crore. This made him the most expensive wicket-keeper in the history of the tournament. So far in the cash-rich league, he has played 47 games and scored 912 runs, with four 50-run innings. He has played in the IPL before for the Mumbai Indians, the Punjab Kings, and the Sunrisers Hyderabad.
All-rounders are a key part of successful teams: Rahul
KL Rahul then said that the team was looking for players who would put the team first and help in both offense and defense. He also said that he talked about player selection with LSG owner Sanjiv Goenka and coach Gautam Gambhir.
Rahul said, “We were very clear about the kind of people we wanted on the team, and we told Sanjiv sir, Gautam Gambhir, and the rest of the support staff that we would try to build a team of players who put their team before themselves, who are team players, and who can contribute in more than one area of the game.”
Also, KL Rahul said that all-rounders are now the most important players for T20 franchises. The 30-year-old also said that was why they kept players like Marcus Stoinis, Krunal Pandya, and Jason Holder, who can bowl and did so in the last tournament.
“I think T20 is going that way, and we’ve also seen it. Successful franchises are full of all-rounders. So we’re very clear about getting a lot of all-rounders on our team. If you look, we started by keeping Stoinis, then we got KP, then we got Jason Holder, and Hooda can bowl and did bowl a few overs last year. It goes on,” the LSG captain said.
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