Former RCB, LSG pacer makes KKR debut replacing Mitchell Starc at Eden Gardens

He was initially roped in as a replacement for England pacer Gus Atkinson. 
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Two-time winners Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) decided to hand a debut to a former Royal Challengers Bengaluru (RCB) and Lucknow Super Giants (LSG) pacer ahead of their match against the Punjab Kings (PBKS) tonight in the ongoing edition of the Indian Premier League (IPL 2024). 

Sri Lankan quick Dushmantha Chameera replaces 2023 ODI World Cup winner and talismanic Australia pacer Mitchell Starc in the KKR squad for the home game.

The news was confirmed by KKR skipper Shreyas Iyer during the coin toss who said, “Starcy got a cut on his finger in the last game."

Interestingly, it was Mitchell Stac himself who handed over the debut cap to Chameera in the pre-match huddle, reflecting a healthy backroom atmosphere at the franchise.

Chameera was initially roped in as a replacement for England quick Gus Atkinson, who pulled out of the tournament. Chameera has previously also worked with current KKR team mentor Gautam Gambhir at LSG during the former India opener's stint with the franchise.

ALSO READ: 'Rather have someone younger': Yuvraj Singh unsure of senior RCB star's place in India squad for T20 World Cup

Mitchell Starc has failed to live up to his lofty price tag

Starc, who became the most expensive player in IPL history after KKR broke the bank to secure his services for a whopping amount of INR 24.75 crores at last December's auction, the Aussie has barely managed to live up to his lofty price tag. 

Starc is having a lacklustre IPL 2024 campaign so far with only six wickets in seven games, with an unimpressive average of 47.83 and an economy of 11.48.

During KKR's last match against the RCB, Starc almost single-handedly lost them the match. Handed the ball by skipper Shreyas Iyer to defend 21 runs in the final over, Starc ended up conceding three sixes to RCB's lower-order batter Karn Sharma. 

However, he managed to defend 3 runs in the last 2 deliveries, helping KKR seal a thriller by just 1 run.

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