IPL 2024: Phil Salt replaces Jason Roy at KKR

Kolkata Knight Riders have brought in Phil Salt as a replacement for Jason Roy for IPL 2024 after Roy pulled out citing “personal reasons”. Having remained unsold in the latest auction after representing Delhi Capitals last year, this will be Salt’s second season in the IPL. He was acquired by KKR at his reserve auction price of INR 1.5 crore (approx $181,000).
Salt’s most recent T20I appearances came in December 2023 in the Caribbean, where he recorded scores of 40, 25, 109 not out, 119 and 38, topping the run-scoring charts with his 331 runs, at a strike rate of 185.95. Unfortunately for him, the two centuries came on December 16 and 19, the latter the date of the auction. With Roy opting out, though, he became an option for KKR.
His 48-ball century in the fourth T20I in the West Indies is the joint-fastest in the format for England, and Salt now has a stellar T20 record, with 5308 runs from 221 innings at a strike rate of 153.41 and an average of 25.89. And he has played around the world, too, including in the BBL, the Caribbean Premier League, the Pakistan Super League, and in leagues in Sri Lanka, the UAE and South Africa.

Roy, for his part, hasn’t had a regular run at the IPL despite his reputation as a short-format champion, even though he has been around a bit, playing for the now-defunct Gujarat Lions in 2017, Delhi Daredevils (now Capitals) in 2018, and subsequently for Sunrisers Hyderabad and KKR; he had been acquired by KKR at the December 2023 auction for INR 2.8 crore.

This, though, isn’t the first time he has opted out of the IPL. He had withdrawn in 2020 (Capitals) for personal reasons and then in 2022 (Gujarat Titans) when he took an “indefinite break” from the game.

The swap doesn’t change the overseas/Indian balance of the KKR line-up. Salt becomes an option for the opening slot along with Rahmanullah Gurbaz, with Sherfane Rutherford the other specialist overseas batter in the mix. That aside, they have old regulars Andre Russell and Sunil Narine, as well as quick bowlers Mitchell Starc and Dushmantha Chameera, who had earlier replaced Gus Atkinson, and Mujeeb Ur Rahman, the fingerspinner.

Shreyas Iyer is the designated captain of the side, which will play its IPL 2024 opener on the second day of the tournament, March 23, against Sunrisers at home in Kolkata’s Eden Gardens.

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