KKR tests rookie players for IPL season 3

KKR mentor Sourav Ganguly tested a few rookie players, including Pawan Singh on the penultimate day of their five-day preparatory camp at Eden Gardens.

updated: August 13, 2009 17:10 IST
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With an aim to reverse their fortunes in the third season of the Indian Premier League, Kolkata Knight Riders mentor Sourav Ganguly on Thursday tested a few rookie players, including Pawan Singh on the penultimate day of their five-day preparatory camp at Eden Gardens here.

The Knight Riders have already 'tested' players from rival camps like Manoj Tiwary (Delhi Daredevils) and Ranadeb Bose (Kings XI Punjab) for IPL season three to be held from March 12-April 25 and the move had raised a few eyebrows.

The former India captain, who saw the players individually standing from the umpire's position, gave ball-by-ball tips to batsmen and bowlers.

"Play your heart out. Tighten the grip of your bat," Ganguly was heard telling Knight Riders batsmen, including Avik Chowdhury, Debabrata Das and Ishank Jaggi.

Gujarat off-spinner Mohnish Parmar, Bengal seamer Ashok Dinda and off-spinner Sourashish Lahiri bowled in tandem as the Knight Riders had two practice sessions in the pre-season training camp which will conclude on Friday.

Incidentally, Ganguly, who is likely to be back as the captain of the Kolkata side, is yet to pad up or swing his arm at the camp.

Having started the pre-season training camp seven months in advance, Knight Riders might have raised a few eyebrows but physio Andrew Leipus thought otherwise.

"The camp so far has been satisfactory. Once Ranji season begins, players will be busy. So it was important to assess everybody's fitness and rectify our mistakes," Leipus said.

"At the end of the camp we will give fitness chart for all the players and ask them to follow the chart. I am sure they will have a top level fitness if they follow the regime," he said.

Knight Riders had a disastrous IPL-II in South Africa, finishing last with the franchise entangled in controversy especially after then coach John Buchanan floated his multiple captaincy theory.

The Australian was later sacked after the season and the post still is lying vacant with the names of former India coach John Wright and Pakistan ex-coach Richard Pybus along with few Indians were doing the rounds, sources said.