The IPL 2014 champions will miss out on the services of mystery spinner Sunil Narine after the latter was reported for the second time running for a suspect illegal bowling action…
KKR has been dealt a severe blow even before a ball has been bowled! The IPL 2014 champions will miss out on the services of mystery spinner Sunil Narine after the latter was reported for the second time running for a suspect illegal bowling action and thus, will not be eligible to bowl in the CLT20 final on Saturday.
“Kolkata Knight Riders player Sunil Narine will not be eligible to bowl in the Oppo CLT20 final following a report on his suspected illegal bowling action,” a media advisory from CLT20 announced to the press.
It was further announced that the organisers sought consult from on-field umpires Rod Tucker and S Ravi along with third umpire Vineet Kulkarni, who reviewed the TV footage of Narine and felt that there was a flex action.
The West Indian was first reported on September 29 during the KKR game against the Dolphins in a group game of the CLT20. Narine is not the only one who was under the cosh of the match officials but Pakistan’s T20 skipper Mohammed Hafeez was also caught under the scanner of suspect bowling action as well as fellow Lahore Lions’ teammate, Adnan Rasool.
With the ban, Narine’s unavailability will be felt by the KKR in the final. With 12 wickets in the CLT20, Narine is leading the charts of wickets column at an impressive economy of 5.30. Moreover, KKR will now have to rely on their young spinners, Kuldeep Yadav and Piyush Chawla to bag in the wickets against a formidable Chennai Super Kings in the final on Saturday.
This will be a major blow to Gautam Gambhir, who has relied on Sunil Narine throughout the CLT20 as well as the IPL journey. The Kolkata Knight Riders are yet to lose a game in this tourney but losing Narine at such important juncture could dampen the spirits amongst the players. Thus, it’s now upto the players and the team management to play as ‘handicapped’ against a CSK team that has dearth of talent. Right from Brendon McCullum, Dwayne Smith, Faf du Plessis to Indian skipper MS Dhoni and Suresh Raina.
The current IPL champions have to be ‘street smart’ if they are to overcome the odds of beating a top side like the Chennai Super Kings. Narine’s miss will be a huge loss but that should make Gambhir’s side a bit stronger, mentally. Sunil Narine’s miss will be a killer blow but that doesn’t count out the chances of KKR in their first ever CLT20 final appearance.