Kolkata Knight Riders all-rounder Venkatesh Iyer was the find of the Indian Premier League (IPL) 2021 season. However, this year the left-hander’s performance has been underwhelming, and is struggling to find form in the tournament.
Venkatesh Iyer averages just 16.50 in nine matches, at a strike rate of 97.77. His lone half-century this season came against the Mumbai Indians when he scored 50 off 41 balls. However, apart from that one knock, Venkatesh Iyer hasn’t done much for the Knight Riders in the season so far. In fact, he was dropped from the playing XI of the franchise for the last match against the Rajasthan Royals.
Former India cricketer Sunil Gavaskar feels that the left-handed batter must be suffering from the second-season syndrome. Venkatesh was retained by the franchise for 8 crores after his brilliant debut season. However, after his poor performance in the first nine matches, Venkatesh was dropped on Monday. Gavaskar said on Star Sports,
“KKR has had to implement a few adjustments as a result of their lack of success. Iyer, Venkatesh… I was thinking of giving someone a long rope because he’s only completed maybe 9 or 10 games and hasn’t done anything with a bat or a ball. He may be suffering from the second-season syndrome.”
— ESPNcricinfo (@ESPNcricinfo) May 2, 2022
Anukul Roy replaced Venkatesh Iyer in the match. Roy took a wicket in the match and finished with the figures of 1/28 in four overs. He also took a catch to dismiss Riyan Parag. Gavaskar feels that the Kolkata Knight Riders brought in the right replacement. He said,
“That’s why they chose Anukul Roy as their companion. We all know how good a fielder he is. We’ve seen him come in as a replacement after a bowler has completed his four overs. He is an exceptional fielder.”
Kolkata Knight Riders register their fourth win of the season
The Kolkata Knight Riders on Monday defeated Rajasthan Royals by seven wickets at the Wankhede Stadium. This marked their fourth win of the Indian Premier League 2022 season.
Rinku Singh and Nitish Rana stayed unbeaten to take the Knight Riders home chasing 153 runs. Rinku won the Player of the Match for his 42* off 23 balls, while Nitish slammed 48* runs off 37 balls. Earlier, Tim Southee took two wickets to restrict the Royals to 152 runs in the first innings.
The Kolkata Knight Riders are seventh on the points table with eight points in ten matches. They will take on the Lucknow Super Giants next on May 7 at the MCA Stadium in Pune.