Andre Russell has formed a special bond with Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) and wants to play the last game in IPL as a part of KKR.
He wants to bid adieu to KKR and IPL just like big players in big football and basketball leagues say goodbye to the sports and the crowd.
Speaking to the KKR’s official online show ‘Knights Unplugged’, 32-year-old Andre Russell said, “Just like players in big (football) leagues like English Premier League, or the Basketball guys (at NBA) retiring from the sport say ‘okay, this is my last game’ and they wave goodbye to the crowd — I imagine I would love to be at KKR until that moment in my career.”
He gets emotional talking about when he will say Shahrukh Khan, KKR co-owner that it will be his last game at KKR home ground Kolkata. He has been playing for KKR since 2014 and been an essential part of the team.
“I’d say, Shah Rukh (KKR Co-owner), all the KKR staff, everyone. This will be my last IPL and the last home game playing in Kolkata.’ It would be such an emotional moment. I sometimes watch videos and I see footballers crying and I’m wondering if I would cry, but that’s the special thing about playing at a club for so long and getting so attached,” he added.
The Jamaican also said that he gets goosebumps when playing in IPL, especially at Eden Gardens.
“Let me confess something–IPL is where I get the most goosebumps when I am playing cricket,” Russell said.
“I get that in the Caribbean Premier League, but playing in the IPL, especially at Eden Gardens, there is no comparison to that crowd,” he added.
“When I walk out before facing a ball, I have goosebumps all over me because of the welcome that I get. That’s pure love, and yes, it puts pressure on me. But it’s good pressure,” he said.
“When Kolkata needs 12 or 13 runs per over, with only 5 overs to go — I love those moments, and the crowd really allows me to do what I need to do. I get a feeling they are telling me: ‘Listen, we have got your back, so just go out and do your business,” he added.
“If everyone was sad, and there was no noise, no entrance, that might make me feel the pressure more. But I know even if I fail two games straight, when I come out to bat for the third game, it is the same deafening reaction I will get from the crowd. It’s always a welcoming thing,” he added.
13th season of Indian Premier League (IPL 2020) is currently suspended due to coronavirus pandemic.