IPL: None can match big-hitting of Russell, says Rinku Singh

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Abu Dhabi, Sep 16 (IANS) Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) batsman Rinku Singh on Wednesday said no one can match the big-hitting prowess of West Indies all-rounder Andre Russell, calling him the world’s best all-rounder at the moment.

Russell, who joined KKR in 2014, was in excellent form last season and will be one of the mainstays of two-time champions KKR during the 13th edition of the Indian Premier League (IPL) which gets underway on Saturday.

“There is no one who can hit the ball better than him. He has a lot of life and strength in him,” Singh told KKR’s website.

Russell smashed 510 runs from 14 matches at a jaw-dropping strike rate of 204.81 and was also the leading wicket-taker for KKR with 11 scalps in the last edition.

“His sixes are massive and I just don’t see any batsman as a competition to him. He is the best all-rounder in the world at this moment,” the Aligarh-based Singh said.

Singh became a part of KKR in 2018 and in the same year he finished as the leading run-scorer for Uttar Pradesh in the group-stage of the Ranji Trophy with 803 runs in nine matches.

“I didn’t do well in the one-dayers [before Ranji Trophy] and I had spoken to Abhishek [Nayar] sir about it. He called me over and we trained a lot.

“I don’t think I have ever batted so much in my life as much as I did there. For almost five hours every day I used to continue batting and my hands even bled at times. The perseverance paid off in the Ranji Trophy later that season,” said Singh, who finished the tournament with 953 runs in 10 matches.