English players including Morgan are unlikely to feature in the rest of IPL 2021 in the UAE due to their pre-scheduled international commitments. Ahead of the T20 World Cup, the Poms will be touring Bangladesh and Pakistan.
Morgan, who guided England to World Cup glory in 2019, had replaced Karthik as the Kolkata outfit’s captain last year in the UAE. Willing to lead the side again, Karthik also confirmed the unavailability of Aussie speedster Pat Cummins, who won’t participate due to personal reasons.
“Pat Cummins has himself said that he will not come. But when it comes to Eoin Morgan, there are still three months to go. A lot can change from now till September. But if I am asked to lead, I will be ready for it,” said Karthik in an interview with The Times of India.
In absence of Cummins, KKR will rely on the likes of Prasidh Krishna, Shivam Mavi, Kamlesh Nagarkoti, Andre Russell, and Sandeep Warrier. This year, Cummins spearheaded KKR’s bowling attack and took nine wickets in seven games along with scoring a quick-fire half-century.
The two-time champions will also hope to get their campaign on track after enduring a shaky start in IPL 2021. They were placed seventh on the points table with just two wins when the league was postponed amid growing COVID-19 cases in its bio-bubble.
The Kolkata-based franchise had missed out on the playoffs spot last season too, finishing fifth in the league standings with seven wins from 14 games.