The two-time Indian Premier League champions Kolkata Knight Riders did some smart business on Thursday in the IPL 2021 Auction. KKR, who retained their core squad for the 2021 season, bought some quality back-up players at effective prices.

KKR add eight players to the squad for the upcoming season as Shakib Al Hasan was the most expensive of them with a price tag of Rs Rs 3.2 crore. It will be a homecoming for Shakib as he has played with KKR in past and has played a monumental role in their title wins during the 2012 and 2014 seasons.

The most interesting player KKR invested during the auction is Harbhajan Singh – the veteran India off-spinner went unsold in the first round, however, in the second round Kolkata got him for the base price – Rs 2 crore.

Meanwhile, with their core from last season retained, KKR will hardly make any changes to their playing XI from 2020 IPL. However, they will still look to find the opening partner for Shubman Gill. There are chances that one of Rahul Tripathi or Nitish Rana is expected to do the job for them.

In the middle order, KKR have Eoin Morgan, Dinesh Karthik and Shakib Al Hasan who can win the game on their own. While with Andre Russell coming at 7, they have a lot of depth in their batting order.

In the bowling department, they have Pat Cummins, Lockie Ferguson and young Indian pacers in Shivam Mavi, Kamlesh Nagarkoti and Prassidh Krishna. The rise of Varun Chakravarthy in IPL 2020, will make him a sure-shot starter for KKR in the 2021 season. While it will be interesting to see how many games will Kuldeep Yadav and Harbhajan Singh get.

Kolkata Knight Riders Predicted 11: Shubman Gill, Nitish Rana, Rahul Tripathi, Eoin Morgan, Dinesh Karthik, Shakib Al Hasan, Andre Russell, Pat Cummins, Varun Chakravarthy, Kamlesh Nagarkoti, Kuldeep Yadav

Players Bought: Shakib Al Hasan (Rs 3.2 crore), Harbhajan Singh (Rs 2 crore), Ben Cutting (Rs 75 lakh), Karun Nair (Rs 50 lakh), Pawan Negi (Rs 50 lakh), Venkatesh Iyer (Rs 20 lakh), Sheldon Jackson (Rs 20 lakh), Vaibhav Arora (Rs 20 lakh)

KKR Full Squad: Eoin Morgan, Dinesh Karthik, Nitish Rana, Shubman Gill, Rinku Singh, Rahul Tripathi, Kamlesh Nagarkoti, Kuldeep Yadav, Lockie Ferguson, Pat Cummins, Prasidh Krishna, Sandeep Warrier, Shivam Mavi, Varun Chakravarthy, Andre Russell, Sunil Narine, Tim Seifert, Shakib al Hasan, Karun Nair, Harbhajan Singh, Sheldon Jackson, Pawan Negi, Venkatesh Iyer and Vaibhav Arora