The two-time champions bought Shreyas Iyer in the recently-conducted IPL 2022 mega-auction for INR 12.25 crore. He replaced Eoin Morgan, who went unsold in the mega auction after not being retained by the Kolkata-based franchise.
Morgan led KKR to the IPL 2021 final, but his form with the bat was the major concern for the 2-time champions. Shreyas Iyer will be the sixth player to lead KKR after Sourav Ganguly (2008-10), McCullum (2009), Gautam Gambhir (2011-17), Dinesh Karthik (2018-20) and Eoin Morgan (2020-21).
KKR defeated Royal Challengers Bangalore, Gujarat Titans and Lucknow Super Giants to acquire the services of Iyer in the mega-auction. This will be the second time Iyer will be leading a side after captaining his former team Delhi Capitals from the mid-2018 season till 2020.
"I am extremely honoured to have gotten the opportunity to lead a prestigious team like KKR. The IPL as a tournament brings the best players from different countries and cultures together and I look forward to leading this great group of very talented individuals," said Iyer in a statement released by KKR.
"I would like to thank the owners, management and support staff of KKR for giving me the opportunity to lead this team and I am confident that we will find the right synergies to achieve the team's goals. Kolkata and The Eden Gardens have a very rich history when it comes to Indian cricket and I look forward to contributing to this rich history and making our fans proud of us as a team! Korbo Lorbo Jeetbo!" added Iyer.
Kolkata Knight Riders head coach Brendon McCullum also expressed his excitement over Shreyas Iyer's signing and said he is looking forward to working with the 27-year old.
"I am very excited to have one of India's brightest future leaders, Shreyas Iyer, take the reins at KKR. I've enjoyed Shreyas' game and his captaincy skills from afar and now will look forward to working closely with him to drive forward the success and style of play we want at KKR," said head coach Brendon McCullum.
"We are delighted firstly to have been able to successfully bid for Shreyas in the IPL auction & to have the opportunity for him to lead TeamKKR. He has impressed one & all as a quality batsman at the highest level & we are confident that he will excel as a leader of TeamKKR," said Venky Mysore, CEO & MD of KKR.
Kolkata Knight Riders Full Squad For IPL 2022
Retained Players: Andre Russell, Sunil Narine, Venkatesh Iyer and Varun Chakravarthy
Players bought at Auction:
Shreyas Iyer (c), Pat Cummins, Nitish Rana, Iyer, Shivam Mavi, Sheldon Jackson, Ajinkya Rahane, Rinku Singh, Anukul Roy, Rasikh Dar, Baba Indrajith, Chamika Karunaratne, Abhijeet Tomar, Pratham Singh, Ashok Sharma, Sam Billings, Alex Hales, Tim Southee, Ramesh Kumar, Mohammad Nabi, Umesh Yadav, Aman Khan.