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KKR launches an academy for the youngsters

Abhishek Nayar has been appointed as the head coach.

Kolkata Knight Riders
Kolkata Knight Riders team (Photo by IANS)

The Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) is one of the most followed and loved teams in the Indian Premier League (IPL). Fans of this team are the most passionate as they fill the iconic Eden Gardens every time the Men in Purple and Gold play. Now in a bid to extend their connect with its young cricketers beyond the duration of the tournament, the franchise launched the first of its kind KKR academy on Wednesday and have appointed Abhishek Nayar as the head coach.

Nayar was the part of the support staff earlier this year for KKR and worked as the consultant for the team. The team did well and went on to qualify for the playoffs. Nayar has also served as the mentor for their captain Dinesh Karthik in the personal capacity and the latter owes him his rejuvenated career now.

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The idea of Venky sir

Abhishek Nayar will be assisted by KKR video analyst AR Srikkanth and Omkar Salvi, who recently was with Mumbai as the bowling coach. The idea of starting the academy is to work with the youngsters who prosper during the season and then, unfortunately, fade away before the next season.

“Post the IPL season, I had a meeting with Venky Sir to discuss the ways forward, and he was very keen on starting something where we can help the cricketers throughout the year. A lot of times, what happens is that we come into the IPL and pick players based on their talent.

“Whether or not they do well depends on their own preparations, so we thought as to what we can do to affect that – to find a change where we can add a little more value to a cricketer’s career and not just come and practice, do well in the IPL, and go away,” Nayar was quoted as saying by KKR’s official website.

What is the plan?

The two-week camp will get underway in Bengaluru soon with the likes of Rinku Singh, Apoorv Wankhede, Nitish Rana and Shubman Gill taking part. More cricketers will join soon as they will work on physical conditioning and try to improve their skills in different types of pitches.

“The idea of KKR Academy has been part of our vision with a view to helping our cricketers improve their skills and fitness as well as grooming talent and providing them with a perfect platform to showcase their skills. This is another step in the professionalisation of the Knight Riders franchise,” Venky Mysore, KKR’s CEO said.

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