Narine credits 'backing from Gambhir' for stellar IPL campaign

Chennai, May 27 (IANS): Kolkata Knight Riders' (KKR) all-rounder Sunil Narine admitted that the freedom that he got from the mentor Gautam Gambhir to express himself with the bat made a huge difference to his performance in IPL 2024.

Narine played a crucial role in KKR's journey to third IPL title victory, finishing the season with 488 runs at a strike rate of 180.74 and 17 wickets, earning him the Most Valuabe Player award for a record third time.

"Getting the role to just go there and express myself, trying to get the team off to a flier, that's key," Narine said after the match. "The backing of the support staff, especially GG (Gambhir) just saying, 'go there and enjoy it, just try to win a few games for the team; I am not asking you to do the entire season, but just a few games.' That was very good advice."

For Narine, the third IPL title was a perfect birthday gift, as KKR clinched the trophy on his 36th birthday. Previously KKR managed to win in 2012 and 2014, and in both occasions Narine was part of the team.

"Coming into the ground today it felt like 2012, when the final was also played in Chennai. I think the feeling is overwhelming and I genuinely couldn't ask for a better birthday gift," he said. "I am enjoying my cricket at the moment, batting, bowling and fielding. What helps is when your team is winning. We have a great bunch of guys who put out a lot of work throughout the season and the fight we gave throughout the season is very good. It shows how good a team we are," he said.

The all-rounder also thanked KKR owner and bollywood star Shahrukh Khan for his immense love and support and also credited MS Dhoni and Chennai Super Kings for their support on their home ground.

"Thank you KKR & @iamsrk sir fans for your love and support. Special thanks to CSK & @msdhoni bhai fans for your support last night at Chepauk,” Sunil Narine wrote on 'X'.



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Title: Narine credits 'backing from Gambhir' for stellar IPL campaign

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