IPL 2021, Team Preview: Power In Their Bank, Punjab Kings Look To Make Play-Offs This Time
For the last six seasons, Punjab Kings (known as Kings XI Punjab till last year) have not made the playoffs even once, finishing eighth twice and seventh once. Last season, they had finished sixth. Although they were in contention for the play-offs, a couple of losses in the end, to Rajasthan Royals and Chennai Super Kings, saw them crash out.
A change of name could, however, might bring them some luck!
Ahead of this season, the biggest challenge for the Punjab franchise was power-hitting in their batting line-up especially towards the end of an innings.
While both skipper KL Rahul and Mayank Agarwal did well last season and Chris Gayle also performed well to make their top-order very strong, their middle-order struggled.
Glenn Maxwell, on whom they relied heavily disappointed and was therefore released ahead of this season. The Australian was picked by Royal Challengers Bangalore for a hefty sum.
However, Punjab Kings have made some expensive purchases to solidify not just their middle and late-order but also their pace bowling attack.
The Mohali franchise has bought England's world No. 1 T20 batsman Dawid Malan and also included Tamil Nadu wunderkind Shahrukh Khan who impressed in the Syed Mushtaq Ali T20 with his power-hitting.
They also bought Australia pace bowlers Jhye Richardson for a whopping Rs 14 crore and Riley Meredith for Rs 8 crore.