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IPL 2019: Kolkata Knight Riders sign up Kerala pacer Sandeep Warrier

Warrier was one of Kerala's brightest spots in the remarkable last season of the Ranji Troph.

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Sandeep Warrier
Sandeep Warrier. (Photo Source: Twitter)

Just a handful of days ahead of the twelfth edition of the Indian Premier League, Kolkata Knight Riders have bolstered their pace department by securing the services of Kerala fast-bowler Sandeep Warrier. Warrier was one of Kerala’s brightest spots in the remarkable last season of the Ranji Trophy where he and his teammates claimed their place in history after powering the team to its maiden semi-final in the country’s premier first-class competition.

Warrier will replace Kamlesh Nagarkoti according to a report in Cricbuzz. The extent of an injury is not known yet and he might well miss out on the whole season once again. Nagarkoti had missed the last season as well due to the foot injury.

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Along with Basil Thampi, who already has the experience of playing in the Indian Premier League, Warrier forged a lethal pace bowling partnership. Warrier finished the season with a staggering 44 wickets including an eight-wicket haul against Gujarat in the quarterfinal. The performance had helped him get a place in the Rest of India squad for the Irani Trophy although he did not play the game.

Warrier continued his impressive show in the Syed Mushtaq Ali Trophy too where he picked up a hat-trick in the thrilling eight-run win over Andhra last month. And Kolkata Knight Riders, on Wednesday, rewarded him by handing the deal for the upcoming season. Warrier, meanwhile, is not new to IPL. He was with the Royal Challengers Bangalore squad from 2013 to 2015 but did not play a single game. In the last years, he did not have any bidders in the auction.

The Knight Riders already have a good all-round pace attack with the likes of Lockie Ferguson, Harry Gurney, Andre Russell and P Krishna in the side. Warrier’s addition will give them an experienced player as far as domestic conditions are concerned.

Knight Riders’ eye third title:

After a remarkable last season where they defied all the odds to make it to the playoffs, the two-time IPL champions will be looking to become just the third team to win the title thrice this season. Not many had given the team a chance last year after they lost their inspirational skipper Gautam Gambhir and players like Manish Pandey and Shakib Al Hasan.

However, Dinesh Karthik marshalled his troop admirably well and led them to the playoffs where they lost to Sunrisers Hyderabad in the second qualifier.

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