Back in 2008 when Indian Premier League (IPL) started, Kings XI Punjab (KXIP) had a 26-year-old southpaw captaining them. Yuvraj Singh was in sublime form and he led the Kings to the semi-final of the tournament. From then on they had more experienced cricketers leading them. Kumar Sangakkara, Mahela Jayawardene, Adam Gilchrist, David Hussey and George Bailey have all led them.

When KXIP released Bailey, it was evident that a new skipper was a matter of time. Since they did not go for any potential captains in the auctions, there were speculations on who would lead the side? The names doing round were of Shaun Marsh, Glenn Maxwell, Mitchell Johnson, Wriddhiman Saha and even Murali Vijay. But the KXIP management dropped a surprise bombshell by appointing the South African David Miller as their seventh captain.

Miller, another southpaw is only 26 and doesn’t lead his national side. KXIP will hope he does as well as Yuvraj in the first season if not better. Out of the eight editions they have been a part of; only twice they have reached the knockout stage. In 2014, under Bailey they looked like the best side of the tournament. They lost to Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) in the final.

Miller has been a key to KXIP for the last few years and over the seasons have produced some of the most impactful performances in IPL. He is important to South Africa’s limited-overs chances but he has not been close to his best in the last few months. KXIP will hope for a turnaround.

Designed by Srushti Takale
Designed by Srushti Takale

Meanwhile, Virender Sehwag, who has played for the Kings till the last season, has been appointed the team mentor.

KXIP Squad: David Miller (c), Swapnil Singh, M Vijay, Wriddhiman Saha, Rishi Dhawan, Kyle Abbott, Glenn Maxwell, Marcus Stoinis, Pardeep Sahu, Anureet Singh, Sandeep Sharma, Farhaan Behardien, Shardul Thakur, Mohit Sharma, Manan Vohra, Gurkeerat Singh, Axar Patel, Nikhil Naik, Mitchell Johnson, Shaun Marsh, KC Cariappa, Armaan Jaffer