IPL 2014 January 10, 2014

Kings XI surprise with Vohra and Miller retention


Kings XI Punjab have provided the first major surprise of the new round of team-building by retaining little-known Punjab batsman Manan Vohra. The other player they held on to was South Africa batsman David Miller, who shot to fame in the IPL with a blistering century against Royal Challengers Bangalore in 2013.

Vohra, a right-hand batsman, has been retained as an uncapped player, and was hired by the franchise last year as a player for the future. He played 12 matches last season, and had a modest record of 161 runs at 20.12 with a top score of 43.

"Obviously, it's a good feeling because I never thought I would be retained," Vohra told ESPNcricinfo in Baroda, where he is playing Punjab's Ranji Trophy quarter-final tie against Jammu & Kashmir. "I did little bit for the team, but now I am excited because I will be playing for the home team."

Vohra's domestic form this season has been rich as he hit a big century against Jharkhand in Punjab's final Ranji league game in late December. "I was the highest scorer for Under-25, and got 187 against Jharkhand and they noticed it," he said. "I just got the news, so excited."

Miller, who was originally picked by Punjab as a replacement player in 2011, was retained for $100,000 in 2012 by the franchise. Although he failed that season, last year Miller finished as Punjab's leading scorer with 418 runs at a strike-rate of 164.56, including that whirlwind century against Royal Challengers.

Miller tweeted: "Really looking forward to this year's #IPL. So chuffed to be retained from @lionsdenkxip. #punjabi"

"We are rebuilding the team entirely but both Miller and Vohra were retained since we felt they had done well with us earlier," a Kings XI official said.

According to him, the franchise did not spend much time thinking about retaining any other player. "Miller is a very crucial batsman for us," the official said. "Apart from Bad Hodge and Kieron Pollard, there are not many like Miller who can turn matches in the lower middle order."

The official also said that Vohra was in the mould of Sanju Samson, the Kerala batsman, who has been retained by Rajasthan Royals. "This season he has been consistent scoring a few hundreds in Under-25 and has got a big century in the Ranji Trophy," the official said. "The previous team management had a lot of time for Vohra and he is a player we can develop."

Nagraj Gollapudi is an assistant editor at ESPNcricinfo; Devashish Fuloria is a sub-editor at ESPNcricinfo

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • Boromeo on January 17, 2014, 14:40 GMT

    Rs12.5 Crores for a foreign player is crazy. For this they could have retained just Vohra or none and eyed everyone just with RTM card, as like DD did. Its clearly an untactful move by KXIP once again as like the previous editions. RIP KXIP

  • nishit on January 13, 2014, 9:49 GMT

    not entirely related... for the next ipl, i think the organizers shud come up with some innovations to enhance the quality of viewing. Ex: Take a leaf out of the big bash and install cams on the batsmen's helmets (in the BBL, the umps have cams on their hats, batting view shud be even better).

  • Gaurav on January 11, 2014, 21:16 GMT

    KIngs XI punjab is very lucky to have some good domestic talent in their ranks like Mandeep, Vohra, Gurkeerat, Jiwanjot SIngh, Sandeep Sharma, Siddharth Kaul. They now just need to pick two good Indian capped players like Irfan Pathan and Zaheer Khan and uncapped spinners like Nadeem, Rasool, Iqbal Abdulla abd Bharghav Bhatt . With Miller already in the squad, Punjab should try to get dependable and very aggressive Finch as opener and duminy, hodge or Luke wright to complete their overseas quota of batsmen. Overseas bowlers could be Morkel, Starc, Bollinger and Lee.

  • Dummy4 on January 11, 2014, 16:45 GMT

    1.finch 2 . starc 3. miller 4. hodge 5.harris 6.lee these are foriegn players add local lad yuvi,mandeep,gurkeet, vohra and chawla.... sandeepsharma vrvsingh and gony for their fast bowling line up with legend Lee...with chawla u can add pravez rasool too complete package of local talent and experienced t20 player this time around make kingx1 to be competitive side

  • Dummy4 on January 11, 2014, 12:31 GMT

    king xi with the team they did very well last three seson ..but they were poor in auction ..when kochi tuskers was termited, i thought they would pick some one like r.p singh,vinay kumar r,jadeja ,kedhar jadhav but rater they made shocking decision by swaping dinesh kaarthick for r satish the only indian batsmen in the team ,immediatly gilly was injured they were forced to open with nithi saini (though his performance were fair . they were sitting qiuet for the entire auction...the overseas contigent were very good players......gilly,huss,miller,marsh,azhar,rhino....they should get huss,marsh ,awana ,sandeep sharma mishra and azhar back and get some good indian players ( sehwag ,yuvraj,bhuvi,dinda,shami,badrinath,dinesh kaarthick ,u chand ,rasoo along with overseas stars like,finch maxwell,mccullum ben stokes ,neesham ,bailey ,anderson,white ,johnson .etc...GILLY SHOULD BE THE COACHl ,

  • Dummy4 on January 11, 2014, 11:36 GMT

    George Bailey has to be one of the best buys..an overseas batsman who is very good at playing spin and a captain....

  • Dummy4 on January 11, 2014, 11:24 GMT

    @ Rahul Sharma on (January 11, 2014, 5:14 GMT): You stated:

    "Best Playing Eleven For KXIP -- Warner/Finch, Maddy, Vohra, Yuvraj etc. "

    Aren't we putting cart before the horse. Playing XI comes after forming the team, no? Many in your XI (or at least a few) may be playing for some other franchise, in the coming season. At least let us wait till the auction is over.

  • vishwa on January 11, 2014, 10:51 GMT

    This is real poor thinking from punjab management. They have wasted 22 crores by retaining 2 players. I agree with retaining miller but what is the point of retaining vohra where he can be bought in auction at very low price. By retaining him they are wasting their purse, and they are investing lot more money on him where he would have bought back to punjab in auction for less price.

  • Cricket on January 11, 2014, 9:11 GMT

    A lot of people want Yuvi back and while he could prove vital, he might be hot property in the auction. Punjab's XI could be something like 1.Finch, 2.Vohra, 3.Mandy, 4.DK, 5.Miller, 6.Neesham/Tendo, 7.Gurkeerat, 8.Starc/Pattinson, 9.Sandeep Sharma, 10.Awana/Shami? 11.Rahul Sharma/Nadeem Based on the players available and Punjab's management's poor showing in the previous auctions, I believe they can create a team like the one above. They need someone like Finch to lead as they don't have a captain, and a good Indian Batsman like DK who can also WK. They need one good fast bowler, and an all rounder to bring balance. Tendo would be perfect provided we can get him, but Neesham is doing really well too. Lastly, we could also have Marsh and some other good domestic players as back up. We do need to go for a new spinner though as Chawla just doesn't cut it anymore. Get Sandeep back and try to go for Shami and we will have a well balanced team.

  • harish on January 11, 2014, 6:32 GMT

    vohra is an outstanding player but he need to just correct his shot selection as i observed in last ipl he need not to throw his wicket. well keep by KXIP.