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Kolkata Knight Riders’ Andre Russell is seen during a practice session ahead of the IPL match against Royal Challengers Bengaluru, in Bengaluru on March 28, 2024.

Kolkata Knight Riders’ Andre Russell is seen during a practice session ahead of the IPL match against Royal Challengers Bengaluru, in Bengaluru on March 28, 2024.
| Photo Credit: K. Murali Kumar

South African-born Namibian cricketer David Wiese created a stir when he stated that Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) head coach Chandrakant Pandit practices a “militant” approach. This did not go down well with overseas players in the franchise, Wiese (a former KKR player) argued on the ‘Hitman for Hire: A year in the life of a franchise cricketer’ podcast.

KKR’s Jamaican all-rounder Andre Russell, however, does not agree with Wiese’s view. Russell explained that it is the duty of players to adapt to a new coach, not the other way around.

“When you are working with a coach for the first time, you have to make sure that you adjust to their philosophy. There have to be rules; there have to be certain things all players have to do as professionals. We don’t complain. We just get to work and try and do the best for this franchise. He has been doing an amazing job, and with Gautam (Gambhir) coming back as well (as team mentor), we have that support,” Russell said in the press conference here on Thursday.

Russell is back to his usual destructive self with the bat, after a disappointing run in IPL 2023. A change in mindset was key to his change in fortunes, Russell said.

“My mindset was not right (in IPL 2023). I was thinking about failure more than thinking about just going out there and doing what I do best. The ‘I don’t want to get out’ mindset is negative. What works is to back yourself. In my role, I don’t face many deliveries, so I cannot expect to bat like a number two or three. The more I play shots, the more scary to bowl I get,” Russell said.

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