Kings XI Punjab will be hoping to find some more consistent form that in IPL 6, when they won eight of their 16 games, and there were moments of individual brilliance, but as a unit they never managed to produce concerted team efforts, and never looked likely to end their wait for an IPL title.
Last season they were too dependant on the performance of a number of talented key individuals, such as Mandeep Singh, Bhargav Bhatt and Adam Gilchrist. But even Gilchrist struggled for his best form, and found himself sitting on the sidelines as he struggled to produce his best. Even the efforts of David Miller in inspiring a number of victories couldn’t hide the deficiencies of the team.
However, Kings XI Punjab seem to have spent their money as wisely as anyone in the auction for IPL 7, and if the makeup of the squad is any indication, then they threaten to be genuine challengers in the coming campaign.
They have managed to secure the services of three marquee Australians.
The fast left arm bowler, Mitchell Johnson, who blew England out of the water during the winter, and then followed up by leading his country to a series win in South Africa. They will also have the services of the Australian T20 captain, Bailey, who was in scintillating form in the ODI series in India before the winter Ashes series, and the all-rounder Maxwell who combines his spin bowling with big hitting batting.
They have also added local players Virender Sehwag and Cheteshwar Pujara to their squad, who have great potential to add to the team’s threat. However, both might also be considered something of a gamble, with Sehwag discarded by Delhi due to his poor form, and Pujara lacking experience in the shorter forms of the game, particularly T20.
One player that Kings will hope continues the development that he showed last season, is Manan Vohra. The right handed batsman scored 161 runs in his 12 appearances last season, and his contribution in the middle order will be important to the potential success of the franchise.