Kolkata Knight Riders

The Kolkata Knight Riders (also known by the acronym KKR) are a franchise cricket team representing the city of Kolkata in the Indian Premier League. The franchise is owned by Bollywood actor Shah Rukh Khan, actress Juhi Chawla and her spouse Jay Mehta. The home of the Knight Riders is Eden Gardens, the largest cricket stadium in India and the second largest in the world by seating capacity.[4]

Kolkata Knight Riders
LeagueIndian Premier League
CaptainDinesh Karthik
CoachBrendon McCullum[1]
OwnerRed Chillies Entertainment
Mehta Group[2]
Team information
CityKolkata, West Bengal, India
Home groundEden Gardens
Indian Premier League wins2 (2012, 2014)
Official website:kkr.in

T20I kit

Kolkata Knight Riders in 2020

The franchise, which has gained immense popularity due to its association with celebrity owners, qualified for the IPL playoffs for the first time in 2011. This also gave them the eligibility to play in the Champions League Twenty20. They eventually became the IPL champions in 2012, by defeating Chennai Super Kings in the final. They repeated the feat in 2014, defeating Kings XI Punjab.[5] The Knight Riders hold the record for the longest winning streak by any Indian team in T20s (14).[6]

The leading run-scorer of the side is Gautam Gambhir,[7] while the leading wicket-taker is Sunil Narine.[8] The official theme of the team is Korbo, Lorbo, Jeetbo Re (we will perform, fight and win!) and the official colours are purple and gold. The brand value of the Knight Riders was estimated at $104 million in 2018, second highest among IPL franchises.[9]

Franchise history

In 2007, the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) created the cricket tournament Indian Premier League based on the Twenty20 form of the game.[10] Eight teams would participate in the inaugural tournament held in April – June of the same year. The teams representing the eight different cities of India were put up on auction in Mumbai on 20 February. The team representing Kolkata was eventually bought by Bollywood superstar Shah Rukh Khan's company Red Chillies Entertainment in partnership with actress Juhi Chawla and her husband Jay Mehta for a price of $75.09 million, equal to approximately ₹2.98 billion at that time.[11] Sourav Ganguly, former captain of the Indian national team and a native of West Bengal, was named the Icon Player for the team. The name of the team is a reference to the popular 1980s American television series Knight Rider.[12]

In June 2015, they bought a stake in the Caribbean Premier League cricket team Trinidad and Tobago Red Steel[13] and later in 2016, renamed it Trinbago Knight Riders.[14]


Initially, when Kolkata Knight Riders were first introduced in 2008, the logo of the team consisted of a blazing golden Viking helmet against a black background with the name of the team written in gold next to it. However, the black background was changed to purple in the third season. It was in 2012 that the current logo, which has a blazing purple Corinthian helmet trimmed with gold, with Kolkata Knight Riders written within a shield was introduced.[15]

The tagline of the team was "All the King's Men" during the first four seasons.[16] However, in the fifth it was replaced by "New Dawn, New Knights". The team's official colours were black and gold during the first two seasons. At the time, Khan said that "golden symbolizes spirit of life and black presents the Goddess Kali."[16] It was later changed to purple and gold during the third season and was kept so. The jersey was created by Bollywood fashion designer Manish Malhotra.[16]

The main theme of the team Korbo, Lorbo, Jeetbo Re (we will act, fight and win!) was scored by Vishal-Shekhar duo.[16] A Knight Riders album featuring several singers and music composers including Usha Uthup and Bappi Lahiri was also created.[17][18]

Home ground

The home venue of the Knight Riders is the iconic Eden Gardens (with the two ends of the crease called the High Court End and the Club House End). Owned by the Cricket Association of Bengal, it is the largest cricket stadium in India and had a seating capacity of over 90,000.[19] In 2011, the stadium was renovated to meet the standards set by the International Cricket Council for the 2011 Cricket World Cup; reducing its capacity to around 68,000. The renovated stadium includes a new clubhouse and players' facilities, upgrading the exterior wall, cladding the existing roof structure with a new metal skin, and general infrastructure improvements.[20] In 2013, two of the team's home matches were hosted by the JSCA International Cricket Stadium in Ranchi.

Panoramic view of the Eden Gardens stadium during IPL 2008

Kit manufacturers and sponsors

Multinational communications corporation Nokia was the official founding sponsor of the Kolkata Knight Riders and remained their principal sponsor until 2014.[9][21][22] In 2015, Chinese mobile phone manufacturer Gionee took over as their principal sponsor and signed a three-year deal worth 540 million (US$7.8 million).[23] In 2018, Nokia returned as the main sponsor of the Knight Riders, signing a two-year deal.[24] Star Plus, Reebok, HDIL, Kit Kat, SB Nation, Doublemint, SAP AG, Red FM 93.5, Seiko, U.S. Polo Assn., Uber, Manyavar, Dish TV, Sansui Electric, Ola Cabs, Pepsi and Sony Music India have all formerly been either co-sponsors or partners.

As of 2019, they have co-sponsorship deals with Jio, Lux Cozi, Exide, Royal Stag, Greenply and Asian Paints along with others. They also have partnerships with The Telegraph, Fever 104 FM, Ibibo, Sprite and Dream11.[25]


Sourav Ganguly, the former captain of the Indian cricket team was the icon player and led the franchise in the 2008 and 2010 seasons. Brendon McCullum lead the team in the intervening period. Both captains were released before the 2011 season. The former team included all-rounders Chris Gayle, David Hussey, Laxmi Ratan Shukla, Angelo Mathews, batsman Ricky Ponting and wicket keeper Wriddhiman Saha. The main bowlers were Umar Gul, Ishant Sharma, Ashok Dinda, Ajit Agarkar and Murali Karthik. Australian batsman Brad Hodge and bowlers Ajantha Mendis and Charl Langeveldt were bought outside the IPL auction in late 2008.

At the 2009 auction the team bought Bangladeshi all-rounder Mashrafe Mortaza at a whopping price of $600,000 dollars. Due to the unavailability of Pakistani players starting 2009, KKR had to suspend the contract of Umar Gul, who was a key performer from the 2008 season.[26][27] On 26 April 2009, KKR administration sent back two of its players Akash Chopra and Sanjay Bangar on the premises of poor performance.[28] Shane Bond was acquired after releasing Ricky Ponting, Morne van Wyk and the Pakistani players Umar Gul, Salman Butt, Mohammad Hafeez and Shoaib Akhtar before the third season. Moises Henriques was traded to Delhi in return for Owais Shah and Manoj Tiwary. Thus, their overseas roster for the 2010 season consisted of Shane Bond, Mashrafe Mortaza, Brendon McCullum, Charl Langeveldt, Ajantha Mendis, Angelo Mathews, Brad Hodge, David Hussey, Owais Shah and Chris Gayle.

2011 heralded the beginning of a new era for KKR. In the 2011 season, KKR drastically revamped their squad. Former captain and icon player Sourav Ganguly was not purchased in the January auction. This led to protest rallies, signature campaigns throughout the country and abroad along with stadium protests by various fan groups, such as No Dada No KKR,[29] which received both national and international press attention.[30][31][32] The team appointed Gautam Gambhir, who was bought for a record-breaking $2.4 million as skipper.[33] Yusuf Pathan was also picked up for a whopping $2.1 million.[33] Other international names who were added include Shakib Al Hasan, Brad Haddin, Jacques Kallis, Brett Lee, Ryan ten Doeschate, Eoin Morgan and James Pattinson. Haddin was replaced by Mark Boucher mid-season due to injury.[33]

In the 2012 auction, KKR bought back their former captain, Brendon McCullum. They also acquired West Indian spinner Sunil Narine and South African fast bowler Marchant de Lange.

The team later added four domestic players to their squad, including Debabrata Das and Iresh Saxena from Bengal, Saurashtra's Chirag Jani and Sanju Samson from Kerala.[34] However, in November 2012, KKR released the latter three from their team along with Jaydev Unadkat, a key performer from the previous seasons. In the 2013 auction, the team acquired only two overseas players, Sachithra Senanayake and Ryan McLaren.

Before the February 2014 auction, the team had only retained their key performers Gautam Gambhir and Sunil Narine. From the auctions that took place, the team brought back Jacques Kallis and Yusuf Pathan with their right-to-match (RTM) card. Also keeping their place in the squad was Ryan ten Doeschate and Shakib Al Hasan. New international players were Morne Morkel, Patrick Cummins and Chris Lynn. Prominent Indian players bought included Robin Uthappa, Umesh Yadav, Manish Pandey, Suryakumar Yadav and Piyush Chawla.

KKR's impressive additions in the 2015 auction were veteran Australian bowler Brad Hogg and wicket-keeper Sheldon Jackson. Before the auction in February 2016, they released Ryan ten Doeschate who was a part of their team for five consecutive seasons along with pace bowler Pat Cummins. The Knight Riders were particularly noted for their change in approach from the previous auctions where they had concentrated on spinners. For the 2016 edition, however, they acquired as many as six pacers in the form of all-rounders John Hastings, Colin Munro, Jason Holder and Rajagopal Sathish as well as bowlers Ankit Rajpoot and Jaydev Unadkat, with the latter being a former player of the squad. They signed one spinner in Manan Sharma.[35] Before the 2017 auctions, they released Morne Morkel, Brad Hogg, Jason Holder, Colin Munro, John Hastings, Jaydev Unadkat, Rajagopal Sathish, Manan Sharma and replacement signing Shaun Tait. From the 2017 Indian Premier League auction, they signed Trent Boult, English all-rounder Chris Woakes, Australian Nathan Coulter-Nile, West Indian Darren Bravo and Jamaican Rovman Powell. The domestic players signed were Rishi Dhawan, Ishank Jaggi, Sayan Ghosh and R Sanjay Yadav. At the time, Andre Russell was banned for one year for doping; he was replaced by Colin de Grandhomme for the season. In January 2018, they only retained West Indian cricketers Sunil Narine and Andre Russell. Their two-time title winning captain Gautam Gambhir was released. At the auction, they retained Robin Uthappa, Piyush Chawla and Kuldeep Yadav using RTM (Right-To-Match) card. KKR also bought back their impressive opener Chris Lynn and uncapped Indian batsman Ishank Jaggi. Other uncapped batsmen bought were Nitish Rana, Shubman Gill, Cameron Delport, Rinku Singh and Apoorv Wankhade. They also bought West Indian uncapped all-rounder Javon Searles and uncapped Indian all-rounders Kamlesh Nagarkoti and Shivam Mavi. Other signings were veteran Indian wicket-keeper Dinesh Karthik, Australian pace bowlers Mitchell Starc and Mitchell Johnson and former Knight Riders player Vinay Kumar.

On 4 March 2018, Dinesh Karthik was appointed as the captain of KKR for IPL 2018 and Robin Uthappa was named vice-captain.[36] Mitchell Starc was ruled out before the season due to injury and Tom Curran was announced as his replacement. Ahead of the auction for IPL 2019, eight players were released from the squad including Mitchell Starc and his replacement Tom Curran.

At the auction, their high-profile buys were Carlos Brathwaite for 5 crore (US$720,000) and New Zealand pacer Lockie Ferguson for 1.6 crore (US$230,000). Other players bought were South African pacer Anrich Nortje, English duo Harry Gurney and Joe Denly as well as uncapped Indian players Nikhil Naik, Prithvi Raj Yarra and Shrikant Mundhe for their base prices of 20 lakh (US$29,000) each. Before IPL 2020, KKR released 11 players from their squad and also traded in Siddhesh Lad from Mumbai Indians.


Season League standing Final standing
2008 6th out of 8 League stage
2009 8th out of 8 League stage
2010 6th out of 8 League stage
2011 4th out of 10 Playoffs
2012 1st out of 9 Champions
2013 7th out of 9 League stage
2014 1st out of 8 Champions
2015 5th out of 8 League stage
2016 4th out of 8 Playoffs
2017 3rd out of 8 Playoffs
2018 3rd out of 8 Playoffs
2019 5th out of 8 League stage

The Knight Riders qualified for the Champions League Twenty20 in 2011, 2012 and 2014, which was the last edition of the tournament before it being permanently called off. The team was eliminated in the group stage in 2011 and 2012, but finished as runners-up in the ultimate season.

Current squad

  • Players with international caps are listed in bold.
  •  *  denotes a player who is currently unavailable for selection.
  •  *  denotes a player who is unavailable for rest of the season.
No. Name Nat Birth date Batting style Bowling style Signed year Salary
27Nitish Rana (1993-12-27) 27 December 1993Left-handedRight-arm off break20183.4 crore (US$492,000)
35Rinku Singh (1997-10-12) 12 October 1997Left-handedRight-arm off break201880 lakh (US$116,000)
77Shubman Gill (1999-09-08) 8 September 1999Right-handedRight-arm off break20181.8 crore (US$260,000)
12Andre Russell (1988-04-29) 29 April 1988Right-handedRight-arm fast-medium20187 crore (US$1.0 million)Overseas
74Sunil Narine (1988-05-26) 26 May 1988Left-handedRight-arm off break20188.5 crore (US$1.2 million)Overseas
N/ASiddhesh Lad (1992-05-23) 23 May 1992Right-handedRight-arm off break202020 lakh (US$29,000)
19Dinesh Karthik (1985-06-01) 1 June 1985Right-handedRight-arm off break20187.4 crore (US$1.1 million)Captain
11Harry Gurney (1986-10-25) 25 October 1986Right-handedLeft-arm fast-medium201975 lakh (US$110,000)Overseas
23Kuldeep Yadav (1994-12-14) 14 December 1994Left-handedSlow left arm chinaman20185.8 crore (US$839,000)
32Shivam Mavi (1998-11-26) 26 November 1998Right-handedRight-arm fast-medium20183 crore (US$434,000)
43Prasidh Krishna (1996-02-19) 19 February 1996Right-handedRight-arm fast-medium201820 lakh (US$29,000)
63Sandeep Warrier (1991-04-04) 4 April 1991Right-handedRight-arm medium-fast201920 lakh (US$29,000)
69Lockie Ferguson (1991-06-13) 13 June 1991Right-handedRight-arm fast20191.6 crore (US$230,000)Overseas
N/AKamlesh Nagarkoti (1999-12-28) 28 December 1999Right-handedRight-arm fast20183.2 crore (US$463,000)

    Administration and support staff

    Head coaches


    Overall results

    IPL summary of results
    Year Played Wins Losses Tied NR Win % Position
    2008 14670146.166/8
    2009 14391123.078/8
    2010 14770050.006/8
    2011 15870053.334/10
    2012 181250170.581/9
    2013 166100037.507/9
    2014 161141068.751/8
    2015 14760153.845/8
    2016 15870053.334/8
    2017 16970056.253/8
    2018 16970056.253/8
    2019 14671042.865/8
    Total 18292833451.68
    • Abandoned matches are counted as NR (no result)
    • Win or loss by super over or boundary count are counted as tied.


    Result summary

    Opposition Span Mat Won Lost Tied Win %
    Chennai Super Kings2008–2015; 2018–present20713035.00
    Delhi Capitals2008–present23139158.69
    Kings XI Punjab2008–present25178068.00
    Mumbai Indians2008–present25619024.00
    Rajasthan Royals2008–2015; 2018–present20108255.00
    Rising Pune Supergiant2016–2017431075.00
    Gujarat Lions2016–2017413025.00
    Royal Challengers Bangalore2008–present241410058.33
    Sunrisers Hyderabad2013–present17107058.82
    Deccan Chargers2008–2012972077.77
    Kochi Tuskers Kerala201120200.00
    Pune Warriors India2011–2013541080.00

    Source= ESPNCricinfo

    Overall results in CLT20

    Year Matches Wins Losses No result % win % Summary
    2011 633050.005/10 (13)
    2012 412133.336/10 (14)
    2014 651083.332/10 (14)
    Total 1696160.00
    Result summary in Champions League
    Opposition Span Matches Won Lost Tied No result % win
    Auckland Aces2011–20122110050.00
    Chevrolet Warriors201111000100.00
    Delhi Daredevils2012101000.00
    Perth Scorchers2012–201421001100.00
    Royal Challengers Bangalore201111000100.00
    Somerset Sabres2011202000.00
    South Australia Redbacks2011101000.00
    Nashua Titans201211000100.00
    Chennai Super Kings20142110050.00
    Hobart Hurricanes201411000100.00
    Lahore Lions201411000100.00

    A reality show by the name Knights and Angels aired on NDTV Imagine in 2009 to pick six cheerleaders for the Knight Riders for the 2009 edition of the Indian Premier League.[44][45]

    See also


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    2. "IPL 2019: Meet the owners of the 8 teams taking the field in season 12". Moneycontrol. Retrieved 15 August 2019.
    3. "Eden Gardens". www.iplt20.com. Retrieved 14 September 2018.
    4. "IPL 2014 Venues". India Today. 11 April 2014.
    5. "Kolkata Knight Riders win IPL 5, beat Chennai Super Kings". Retrieved 13 October 2012.
    6. "Records / Twenty20 matches / Team records / Most consecutive wins". ESPNcricinfo. Retrieved 2 October 2014.
    7. "Kolkata Knight Riders / Records / Twenty20 matches / Most runs". Stats. cricinfo.com. Retrieved 30 May 2012.
    8. "Kolkata Knight Riders / Records / Twenty20 matches / Most wickets". Retrieved 30 May 2012.
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    10. "Everything you wanted to know about the Indian Premier League". Cricinfo. 19 September 2007. Retrieved 20 February 2008.
    11. "Shah Rukh Khan's Kolkata IPL team to be called Night Riders or Knight Riders". Cricinfo. 9 February 2008.
    12. Roy, S.K. & Chakraborti, R (23 September 2013). "Chapter 6: Getting There". In Mutum, Dilip (ed.). Marketing Cases from Emerging Markets. Springer Science and Business Media. p. 70. ISBN 9783642368615.
    13. "KKR owners buy stake in CPL franchise T&T Red Steel". Espncricinfo.com. 10 June 2015. Retrieved 14 September 2018.
    14. "Superstar Shah Rukh Khan's CPL franchise is now Trinbago Knight Riders". Zee News. 10 February 2016.
    15. "Kolkata Knight Riders unveil new look, new logo". NDTV. 14 February 2012. Retrieved 14 February 2012.
    16. "King Khan launches Kolkata Knight Riders". Yahoo. 11 March 2008. Archived from the original on 16 March 2008. Retrieved 11 March 2008.
    17. "Kolkata Knightriders launched amidst gloom". Hindustan Times. 11 March 2008. Archived from the original on 10 February 2012. Retrieved 11 March 2008.
    18. "No new videos for IPL teams!". Oneindia.in. 24 February 2010. Retrieved 17 April 2012.
    19. Eden Gardens | India | Cricket Grounds | ESPN Cricinfo. Content-ind. cricinfo.com. Retrieved 4 September 2011.
    20. "Kolkata's Eden Gardens stadium gets a new look for Cricket World Cup 2011". World Interior Design Network. Archived from the original on 16 June 2010. Retrieved 10 June 2010.
    21. "Nokia renews contract with Kolkata Knight Riders for IPL 4". Economic Times. 1 April 2011. Retrieved 17 April 2012.
    22. "Reebok offers IPL merchandise". Indianretailer.com. 16 April 2012. Retrieved 17 April 2012.
    23. "Gionee clinches KKR sponsorship for ₹54 cr". The Hindu. 4 April 2015.
    24. "Nokia coming back as principal sponsor of Kolkata Knight Riders in IPL 2018". Business Standard. 1 April 2018.
    25. "KKR -- Official Website". Kkr.in. Retrieved 18 April 2019.
    26. "Kolkata Knight Riders Sq­". Cricinfo. 26 April 2008. Retrieved 28 April 2008.
    27. "Hodge joins IPL for five weeks". Cricinfo. 26 April 2008. Retrieved 28 April 2008.
    28. "KKR send back Chopra, Bangar". Indian Express. 27 April 2009. Retrieved 17 April 2012.
    29. Cricket (14 April 2011). "IPL: Fans Make 'No Dada, No KKR' Campaign a Success". SportsKeeda. Retrieved 1 February 2012.
    30. India, Press Trust of. "Without Ganguly, Eden gets poor response". NDTVSports.com. Retrieved 24 October 2016.
    31. "Dada fans still hope of his return - Indian Express". Archive.indianexpress.com. Retrieved 24 October 2016.
    32. "Facebook's Ganguly fans plan protest march". Timesofindia.indiatimes.com. Retrieved 24 October 2016.
    33. "Kolkata Knight Riders bank on Gambhir". The Times of India. 9 April 2011. Retrieved 25 August 2011.
    34. "KKR sign four domestic players for IPL-5 : Cricketnext". Cricketnext.in.com. 1 March 2012. Retrieved 26 May 2012.
    35. "From Buttler fortifying Mumbai Indians to KKR's faith in pace: SWOT analysis of IPL auction". Firstpost. 8 February 2016.
    36. "Karthik to lead KKR in IPL 2018". Cricbuzz. Retrieved 4 March 2018.
    37. "B-school boy gets back to the game". The Economic Times. Retrieved 12 April 2015.
    38. "Shahrukh Khan's 'Red Chillies' appoints Venky Mysore as CEO". The Economic Times. Retrieved 12 April 2015.
    39. "KKR appoint Venky Mysore as CEO". Mumbai. 24 September 2010. Retrieved 5 January 2011.
    40. "Data Cruncher: AR Srikkanth, Video Analyst, Kolkata Knight Riders". The Economic Times. Retrieved 12 April 2015.
    41. "Dav Whatmore profile". Retrieved 31 May 2012.
    42. "Kallis appointed Knight Riders head coach". Cricinfo.com. 21 October 2015. Retrieved 18 April 2019.
    43. "Indian Premier League Cricket Team Records & Stats | ESPNcricinfo.com". Cricinfo. Retrieved 5 May 2019.
    44. Glamsham. "SRK chooses his six Angels - News". Glamsham.
    45. "Knights and Angels". Sify. Retrieved 16 June 2019.
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