KKR camp divided in 2 groups ahead of RCB clash? Andre Russell provides insight about the dressing room atmosphere under Chandrakant Pandit

Published - 29 Mar 2024, 11:40 AM

Andre Russell and KKR head coach Chandrakant Pandit
Andre Russell and KKR head coach Chandrakant Pandit (Image Credits: Twitter)

Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) all-rounder Andre Russell refuted David Wiese’s criticisms of head coach Chandrakant Pandit’s style. Andre Russell emphasized his positive working relationship with Chandrakant Pandit over the past year in the Indian Premier League.

David Wiese expressed concerns about Pandit’s coaching style, describing it as ‘militant’. He emphasized Pandit’s strict and disciplined approach, suggesting that international players might find it challenging to adapt to constant instructions on behavior and attire.

David Wiese attacked Pandit’c coaching style

“He (Pandit) is known in India as a very militant type of coach. He is very strict, very disciplinarian and that type of stuff,” Wiese had said on the podcast ‘Hitman for Hire: A Year in the Life of a Franchise Cricketer’ recently.

“Sometimes in franchise cricket, when you have overseas guys, who’ve played all over the world, they don’t need anyone coming and telling them how they need to behave, what they need to wear and what they need to do the whole time. So, that was tough.”

In 2023, the Knight Riders appointed Pandit as head coach, succeeding Brendon McCullum, due to his impressive track record in domestic cricket. Pandit guided Madhya Pradesh to a Ranji Trophy triumph and led Vidarbha to consecutive titles in 2018 and 2019.

However, the two-time IPL champions faced a challenging 2023 season, finishing seventh in the standings with 12 points. Wiese had limited opportunities, featuring in only three matches where he scored 21 runs at a strike rate of 190.91 and failed to pick up a wicket.

The Knight Riders demonstrated confidence in Chandrakant Pandit despite a lackluster performance in the 2023 season. The team management retained Pandit as coach for the 2024 season. They appointed former captain Gautam Gambhir as the team’s mentor.

Chandrakant Pandit Made Things A Lot Easier For Us – Andre Russell

During the pre-match press conference, Andre Russell expressed his support for Chandrakant Pandit. Russell emphasized the positive rapport they’ve developed since last year. He highlighted the importance of trust in their coach’s philosophy.

“Working with him from last year, we got to know the type of person he is and that made things a lot easier for us,” Russell said.

“When you work with a coach in the first year, you have to make sure you have to trust their philosophy…we have to do certain things as professionals. It’s been going good,” he added.

Last Saturday, Andre Russell propelled the Kolkata Knight Riders to a thrilling four-run victory over Sunrisers Hyderabad (SRH) at the Eden Gardens. The Kolkata-based franchise made a strong start to their campaign in the ongoing marquee tournament.

KKR set a formidable total of 208 for seven after batting first and successfully defended it, limiting SRH to 204 runs. Russell’s explosive innings of 64 runs off 25 balls, including three boundaries and seven sixes, earned him the title of Player of the Match.

The Shreyas Iyer-led side will aim to secure the first away win of the season. Their upcoming match against Royal Challengers Bengaluru (RCB) is scheduled for Friday, March 29, at the Chinnaswamy Stadium.

Also read: “Will you blame Gautam Gambhir?” – Sunil Gavaskar’s stunning take on Andre Russell’s heroics vs SRH

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Andre Russell Chandrakant Pandit David Wiese IPL 2024 Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR)