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IPL 2020: 5 Players to Watch Out For KXIP This Season

Kings XI Punjab like the Royal Challengers Bangalore have been the perennial underachievers in the Indian Premier League. Despite picking a strong team season after season, they somehow fail to translate their performance into potential. Something that has hurt their progress in the past editions is also their constant change of support staff. They have changed their support staff almost every season which has not resulted in the way they wanted it to be. This edition again they have picked a strong squad and they have a number of players to watch out for who can help them win their maiden IPL title. 

Continuing our coverage of ‘Players to Watch Out For’, today we pick five KXIP players who can have a defining season for the side.

KL Rahul

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Rahul was retained by KXIP after a successful season last year. He scored 659 runs in his debut season for the Kings in 2018 and 593 runs in 2019 which included an unbeaten ton against Mumbai Indians. With Ravichandran Ashwin traded to Delhi Capitals ahead of the start of the season, Punjab needed a captain after the end of the IPL 2020 auctions. The management named Rahul as the skipper for the side for the upcoming season, which makes him the most important player to watch out for in the team now. They see Rahul as a player for the future and this is perhaps the reason why he was named the skipper of the side. Rahul made his debut in IPL in 2013, but it was not until 2018, that he flourished in the league. Courtesy his exploits in the IPL, he broke through the Indian ODI and T20I team and now is a very integral part of the batting line-up in the two formats. Spending two back to back successful seasons with Punjab, as a captain now he has the added responsibility of scoring big runs for his side. His form will certainly decide Punjab’s progress in the tournament. 

Also Read: IPL Auction 2020 As it Happened

Glenn Maxwell

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Maxwell is coming back to the franchise where he flourished as an IPL cricketer. He scored 552 runs for Punjab in 2014 and played a big role in taking them to their first IPL final. He was released by the franchise after IPL 2016. After skipping the IPL last year due to World Cup commitments for his national side, Maxwell was one of the first overseas cricketers to enlist his name in the IPL 2020 auctions. He was picked up by his former franchise Kings XI Punjab for 10.75 crores which made him one of the most costliest players in this IPL auction. He was the costliest among the players Punjab bought this season. The return of Maxwell bolsters the middle-order and he will be the bridge between the top and the lower-middle order. Also, he is a handy option with the ball, besides being an excellent fielder which makes him one of the key players to watch out for Kings XI Punjab. 

Also Read: IPL 2020: 5 Players to Watch Out For RR This Season

Nicholas Pooran

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Making his debut for Punjab in the last IPL season, Pooran hogged the limelight for his explosive approach to batting. He scored 168 runs from seven games striking the ball at 157. Due to his batting exploits, Punjab retained him ahead of IPL 2020 auctions. Along with Maxwell, he becomes another player to watch out for the KXIP middle-order. Pooran and Maxwell should make it to the Punjab playing XI every game and can take the game away from the opposition on a given day. The left-hander can also keep for his side and thus becomes a utility cricketer for the 2014 IPL finalists. 

Also Read: IPL 2020: 5 Players to Watch Out For KKR This Season

Sheldon Cottrell 

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Punjab spent 8.5 crores behind roping in the Windies left-arm pacer. Cottrell has risen through the ranks in the last few years in ODI and T20I cricket. He picked up 12 wickets for the Windies, who made a first-round exit in the ICC 2019 World Cup. Cottrell bowls the tough overs for the Windies and with KXIP he will be expected to do the same. His slower ones and cutters are deceiving for batsmen to read and his variations are what he would be banking upon to be successful in the season. He becomes one of the two bowlers to make it to this list. Surely, he will be a key player to watch out for Punjab in IPL 2020.

Also Read: IPL 2020: 5 Players to Watch Out For CSK This Season

Mohammed Shami

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Shami is the final name in the ‘Players to Watch Out For’ list for Kings XI Punjab. He was retained ahead of the IPL 2020 auctions having joined them in IPL 2019. He picked up 19 wickets last season, the most by any Punjab bowler. Shami constantly bowls over 140 with pace and swings the ball as well. He made a comeback in the Indian T20I team for the T20I series against Bangladesh and West Indies. He is in good bowling form at the moment and Punjab would hope that he keeps his form going. With Cottrell being a left-arm pacer, Shami would be the perfect partner from the other end. Both are very different type of bowlers and add the required variety in Punjab’s bowling resources. 

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