In search of their third IPL title this year after previous triumphs in 2012 and 2014, Indian Premier League franchise Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) are making some novel changes in the backroom team to gear up ahead of new season. Earlier this week, KKK announced that they have acquired former England wicketkeeper-batsman James Foster as their fielding coach for the upcoming 2020 edition of the IPL.
“ANNOUNCEMENT Welcome aboard, James Foster!! The former keeper has been named #KKR’s fielding coach for #IPL2020 #KKR #KorboLorboJeetbo #Cricket @JamesFoster07,” KKR tweeted confirming his appointment.
Foster will replace former Assam cricketer Subhadeep Ghosh in the role he got before IPL 2019. The 39-year-old is one of the most experienced players in English cricket, having played over 500 games for Essex County Cricket Club. He is a veteran of 289 first-class matches, collecting 13,761 runs at an average of 36.69 apart from effecting 901 dismissals behind the stumps.
In 223 List A games, he scored 3357 runs at 28.44 while in 179 T20s, he scored 2158 runs. He also played 23 fixtures for the national team. Foster retired from the international cricket scene in 2018 and chose coaching as his new career.
Since retiring in 2018 after 18 years at Essex, Foster was engaged in several coaching roles from teams like Khulna Titans, Pesahawar Zalmi, Sydney Thunder, Vancouver Knights, Afghanistan Boost Defenders, Worcestershire and England Lions that benefitted from his advice in recent years. He was with Glamorgan as a consultant in the T20 Blast during summer and prior to this appointment.
Foster, who played seven Tests, 11 one-day internationals and five T20s for England will be joining the coaching staff led by Brendon McCullum, who replaced Jaques Kallis as head coach. KKR were knocked out from the league after making to the playoffs on two occasions now since their last title win in 2014.
Meanwhile, KKR bagged some powerhouse players in the IPL auction in December last year, including Bowler Pat Cummins inked a INR 15.5 crores deal and along with English limited-overs captain Eoin Morgan, Tom Banton, Chris Green, Siddhesh Lad, Varun Chakravarthy, Maniraman Siddharth.
The start of the new season was earlier announced to be on March 29, while the final of the tournament will be played on May 24 to be played both in Mumbai, the home ground of the defending champions Mumbai Indians.
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