Kolkata Knight Riders have asked the senior pair of Aakash Chopra and Sanjay Bangar to return to India since they do not fit in the present "scheme of things". The decision was taken after discussions between coach John Buchanan and the team management and while the players were not "happy" they accepted the decision. Both Chopra and Bangar, along with a few injured players will board a flight from Cape Town on Monday.
"These [Chopra and Bangar] are two very good senior international players so John Buchanan and the team management thought that if they are not going to have the opportunity [to play] it is unfair to keep them around," Joy Bhattacharya, Kolkata CEO, said. Chopra played in Kolkata's first two matches, but got the opportunity to bat only once, managing 11 off 19 balls in first game. Bangar played in the thriller against Rajasthan Royals on Thursday, but failed to make an impression, scoring just two.
"Nobody is ever happy about going back, but they took it right frame of mind," Bhattacharya, asked for the players' reactions. He also said that both players will be back next season as their contracts are for three years.
With this latest trim Kolkata have effectively brought their squad strength down to a manageable 20 from the staggering 54 originally picked. There are 11 Indians left in the team in addition to the nine foreigners. "Right now we are down to 11 Indians and seven of them need to play so we don't think we will trim it," Bhattacharya said.
Kolkata Knight Riders squad:
Anureet Singh, Ajit Agarkar, Ashok Dinda, Sourav Ganguly, Chris Gayle, Arindam Ghosh, Moises Henriques, Brad Hodge, David Hussey, Murali Kartik, Charl Langeveldt, Brendon McCullum, Mashrafe Mortaza, Angelo Mathews, Ajantha Mendis, Wriddhiman Saha, Shoaib Shaikh, Ishant Sharma, Laxmi Shukla, Yashpal Singh.