Indian Premier League 2009 April 9, 2009

Ganguly among runs for KKR

Cricinfo staff

The controversy over John Buchanan's multiple-captain strategy for the Kolkata Knight Riders does not seem to have affected Sourav Ganguly, who was among the runs in a practice tie against the Eagles in Bloemfontein on Wednesday.

Ganguly hit a brisk unbeaten 61 and was well-supported by Cheteshwar Pujara (66 not out) as KKR ran out winners by nine wickets, the Kolkata Telegraph reported. With the IPL beginning on April 18, the pre-tournament form will come as a welcome boost for Ganguly, who was embroiled, before leaving India, in a controversy surrounding Buchanan's theory.

"I don't wish to comment on the captaincy issue. But, yes, it's nice to get runs in one's first match in new conditions. However, there's a long way to go, there's plenty of work to be done," the paper reported Ganguly as saying.

Buchanan's concept of having multiple leaders, later altered to 'one captain, many strategists' would redefine leadership in cricket. It has been on trial during these warm-up games, albeit with little success. The first two games against the same opposition on Tuesday, with Laxmi Ratan Shukla at the helm, resulted in heavy defeats - by 48 runs and four wickets respectively.

Ganguly, who sat out both those matches, replaced Aakash Chopra on Wednesday. Although it remains uncertain if the side would have a regular or rotating captain, Ganguly would no doubt have made a firm claim.

Ajit Agarkar and Charl Langeveldt also showed good form with the ball picking up two wickets apiece. However, an injury to wicketkeeper Wriddhiman Saha, who underwent surgery on his left thumb late on Monday, caused some concern.

"Nothing can be assumed till the stitches are removed. For now, we've just got to wait and watch," said Joy Bhattacharjya, KKR's team director.