KKR says single captain to be named in South Africa

April 1st, 2009 - 12:59 am ICT by IANS  

Shah Rukh Khan Kolkata, March 31 (IANS) Seeking to brush under the carpet the recent controversy on the skipper issue, the Kokata Knight Riders team management Tuesday opted for a single captain. But said it would announce the skipper in South Africa where the second edition of the Indian Premier League (IPL) is slated to be played next month.
A statement, which was circulated among the media in the form of an SMS, said: “the captain for the team is one and one only, as is the case in most sports,” virtually rubbishing coach John Buchanon’s theory of multiple captains.

In a balancing act, the KKR statement stopped short of naming Ganguly as the captain.

“Needless to say the term ‘multi-captain’ has raised a few eye-brows and questions. Even this confusion is caused because these roles got described as ‘multiple captains’ a day before the joint press conference (March 25) between John and Dada (Sourav Ganguly),” the statement said.

However, the statement spoke of having a set of strategists, “who will form a team of 4-5 experts in the field.

“These coaches or strategists will assist the one captain on field with their viewpoints on the gameplan set earlier or shoot from the hip as the case may be,” said the statement, attributed to KKR management, but widely believed to be the handiwork of team co-owner and Bollywood star Shah Rukh Khan.

It went on to explain that the roles “which are there in the regular format of the game as the fielding expert, batting coach are being better defined to be able to give quick suggestions as in the case of baseball and some other faster-paced sports”.

While claiming there was no dissent on the team, the KKR management referred to a collective decision making. “All internal decisions are taken collectively by the core cricketing team which comprises John, Sourav, (assistant coach) Matthew Mott and a few others”.

The KKR management said it had “immense respect for the two most senior members of our KKR team (Buchanon and Sourav) and all the decisions are taken in tandem”.

The KKR said it would take a call on the issue of captain, vice captain and the team after the practice sessions in South Africa ahead of the gruelling league.

“As the team is not decided because of all the overseas venue changes etc…we’ll take the call on the issue of captain, vice-captain, the team post the sessions in South Africa prior to the first game.

“Reason for doing so is not to shirk the issue of who’s the captain but to announce all that together to make that a cohesive decision from the team management…to avoid confusion like it has resulted right now,” the statement added.

Returning to the city after deliberations with Shah Rukh and Buchanon in Mumbai, Ganguly said: “We had a good meeting.”

But he refused to give any more details, saying, “Whatever press release has been given by the KKR, we will stick to it.”

The first batch of KKR players left for South Africa from Mumbai during the day.

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