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Gambhir admits Suryakumar Yadav as ‘only regret in seven years of captaincy’: ‘KKR never identified his potential’

Suryakumar Yadav had joined the Gautam Gambhir-led KKR side in 2014 and was part of the franchise in 2017

Suryakumar Yadav has been a name synonymous with Mumbai Indians over the years, having emerged as not only a key player in the batting set-up, but is also identified as a potential leader for the franchise, during his sensational tenure since 2018. It was his heroics at MI that helped him crack into the Indian white-ball side and rise to the top of the IC batting rankings in the format. However, the very same Suryakumar was once part of Kolkata Knight Riders set-up, between 2014 and 2017, before he was let gone. As then captain Gautam Gambhir looks back at that KKR era, which lifted two IPL titles, he labelled the India star as his biggest regret.

Suryakumar Yadav was part of KKR between 2014 and 2017

Suryakumar had kicked off his IPL career back in 2012, where he played only one match for Mumbai Indians, before being released by the franchise the following year. In 2014, he was roped in by KKR and won the title in his first season at the franchise. Over the course of his four-year stay at the franchise, the right-handed batter scored 608 runs in 54 matches, but most of those scores came as a lower middle order batter.

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Speaking to Sportskeeda on Monday, Gambhir admitted that not identifying Suryakumar’s potential or his best batting position in the lineup remains his biggest regret in his tenure as KKR captain.

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“A leader’s role is to identify the best potential and show it to the world. If there is one regret I have in my seven years of captaincy is that me and as a team never managed to use Suryakumar Yadav to the best of his potential. And the reason was down to combinations. You can only play one player at No. 3. And as a leader, you have to think about the other 10 players in the XI as well. He would have been way more effective at No. 3, but was equally good at No. 7,” he said.

Gambhir further hailed Suruyakumar as a team player, explaining why he was named as the team vice-captain in 2015.

“He was also a team man. Anyone can be a good player, but being a team man is a difficult task. Whether you play him at No. 6 or 7 or bench him, he was always smiling and always ready to perform for the team. That is why we appointed him as the vice-captain,” he added.


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