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Akram unavailable for IPL-VI

Calcutta: Former Pakistan captain Wasim Akram, whose presence as the bowling coach and mentor played a significant role in the Kolkata Knight Riders’ triumph in IPL-V, will not be available for the upcoming season of the T20 tournament, the franchise announced on Monday.

As per the media release, which also announced some other changes in the Knights’ support staff, Akram would be unavailable this time around as he wishes to spend more time with his family. Knights’ CEO, Venky Mysore, admitted Akram would be “badly missed”.

“Wasim will be badly missed. He’s a legend and a great motivator to have around the team. However, we fully appreciate the reasons why he will be unavailable. We hope this break will give him the much-needed time to be with his family,” Venky was quoted as saying by the media release.

He added that the franchise hopes to work with the legend in the future. “We hope to work with him in the future,” Venky said.

Trevor Penney will join the Gautam Gambhir’s as the fielding coach. “We are delighted that Trevor will join the excellent support staff of KKR comprising of head coach Trevor Bayliss, assistant coach Vijay Dahiya, physio Andrew Leipus, strength trainer Adrian Le Roux and analyst AR Srikkanth.

“Trevor is a fine professional and will no doubt add to the depth of the team,” Venky said.

Joy Bhattacharjya, who has been the Knights’ team director, will take on a different role as the advisor — content development and management. All team-related matters henceforth will be handled by Mathew Joy.

The Knights will face the Delhi DareDevils in the opening game of the sixth edition of the tournament. The match will be played at the Eden, on April 3.