Kolkata Knight Riders rope in Colin de Grandhomme as replacement of banned Andre Russell

Kolkata Knight Riders lost their star all-rounder as Andre Russell is facing a year ban, bring in New Zealand all-rounder as replacement

New Zealand all-rounder Colin de Grandhomme was on Monday named as replacement for West Indian Andre Russell in the Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) squad ahead of the Indian Premier League (IPL) season 10. De Grandhomme has featured in six Tests, nine One-Day Internationals (ODIs) and eight T20 Internationals for New Zealand so far. He made his Test debut for New Zealand in late 2016 and marked the occasion with a six-wicket haul.

The 30-year-old Kiwi all-rounder has been playing T20s for 10 years and has a good all-round record. He has 6 half-centuries in 100 T20 matches at an average of 26.05 and a strike rate of 171.04. Whereas, in the bowling department, he has 40 wickets at an ordinary economy rate of 9.18 and an average of 28.50.

However, he is yet to prove himself in the international circuit in the shortest format of the game but he is a promising prospect for KKR. Russell had done brilliantly well for KKR as he bowled reasonably well in the death overs and won the game for them with the bat as well. Russell had the ability to turn the course of the game single-handedly.

Expecting Grandhomme to fill in Russell’s shoes will not be unfair but he will have a big responsibility to delivery in Indian conditions both with bat and ball. It will be interesting to see how he performs keeping in mind he has never played international cricket in India.

Kolkata Knight Riders commence their IPL campaign on Friday at the SCA Stadium, Rajkot, where they will face Gujarat Lions. The flamboyant 28-year-old Russell was on January handed a one-year ban for violating anti-doping regulations.

(With inputs from IANS)