Lucknow Super Giants (LSG) IPL 2023 Analysis: KL Rahul's Form To Top International All-Rounders - In Pics
On April 1, 2023, at the Atal Bihari Vajpayee Ekana Stadium in Lucknow, KL Rahul will lead the Lucknow Super Giants in their opening match of the Indian Premier League 2023 against the Delhi Capitals. The Super Giants made their IPL debut in 2022 and managed to reach the playoffs, but were ultimately defeated by the Royal Challengers Bangalore in the Eliminator. Given their strong performance last season, the Lucknow franchise is now considered a top contender to win the title in IPL 2023. The team has a solid think tank, consisting of head coach Andy Flower and team mentor Gautam Gambhir, a former India batsman who has won two IPL titles with the Kolkata Knight Riders.
All Eyes On KL Rahul
Super Giants may face a challenge in the absence of experienced Indian players, apart from their captain KL Rahul. Although the team has a number of talented domestic players, they will need to perform at a consistently high level to make up for the lack of experienced players.
Last Year's Performance
Lucknow Super Giants marked their debut in the IPL with an impressive third-place finish in the league stage, registering nine victories and five defeats. However, their journey was cut short when they lost to Royal Challengers Bangalore in the Eliminator round.
LSG squad for IPL 2023
KL Rahul (capt), Avesh Khan, Ayush Badoni, Quinton de Kock (wk), K Gowtham, Deepak Hooda, Prerak Mankad, Kyle Mayers, Amit Mishra, Mohsin Khan, Naveen-ul-Haq, Krunal Pandya, Nicholas Pooran (wk), Ravi Bishnoi, Daniel Sams, Karan Sharma, Romario Shepherd, Marcus Stoinis, Swapnil Singh, Jaydev Unadkat, Manan Vohra, Mark Wood, Mayank Yadav, Yash Thakur, Yudhvir Singh
Late Arrival Of Quinton de Kock
Super Giants' latest acquisition, Quinton de Kock, will only join the team on April 3, following his commitment to South Africa's ODI series against Netherlands. As a result, he will not be available for their season opener against Delhi Capitals on April 1, nor for their second match against Chennai Super Kings on April 3. Meanwhile, left-arm fast bowler Mohsin Khan, who was a standout performer for the Super Giants in the previous season, is expected to miss the majority of IPL 2023 due to a shoulder injury. According to ESPNcricinfo, Mohsin underwent surgery last year to remove blood clots from his bowling shoulder and has yet to resume bowling. Despite being one of the best bowlers in the previous IPL season, his absence is likely to have a significant impact on the Super Giants' bowling attack.
Can Pooran Deliver?
To bolster their batting line-up, Super Giants made a hefty investment of INR 16 crore (approx. US $1.95 million) in Nicholas Pooran, who has a reputation as a reliable finisher and also offers wicketkeeping services. Additionally, they have the services of an in-form Jaydev Unadkat, who could bring the confidence from his recent return to the national side to the IPL. Moreover, Unadkat could prove to be a valuable asset as a replacement for the injured Mohsin, who has not played any cricket since IPL 2022.
Top-Notch Foreign All-rounders
Super Giants have a plethora of allrounders at their disposal, including K Gowtham, Deepak Hooda, Krunal Pandya, Romario Shepherd, Marcus Stoinis, Daniel Sams, and Mayers, which gives the team a great deal of flexibility. Among these allrounders, two bowl offspin, one is a left-arm spinner, three are right-arm medium-pacers, and the other bowls left-arm pace. In addition, the team has an impressive frontline attack that boasts high-pace options in Mark Wood and Avesh Khan, as well as three left-arm seam options in Unadkat, Sams, and the injured Mohsin. Furthermore, the team's spin-bowling department offers a wide range of options to choose from, which provides a lot of variety to their bowling attack.
Big Games In 1st Week
Super Giants are scheduled to play three games in the first seven days of the season, including a trip from Lucknow to Chennai and back. Furthermore, the team's first six matches are all scheduled to be night games, which means that they will likely have to contend with dew affecting the playing conditions. The team will also have to quickly figure out how to make the most of the new rules regarding naming their XI after the toss.