chris lynn
Chris Lynn is doubtful to play for KKR in the opening week of IPL 2018 due to a shoulder injuryIANS

Ahead of the 11th season of the Indian Premier League, we tell you all you need to know about the Kolkata Knight Riders.

KKR are looking to make a fresh start under new captain Dinesh Karthik as they bid to win the Indian Premier League (IPL) title for the third time after previous wins in 2012 and 2014. Captain Gautam Gambhir, who led Kolkata to those title wins, was not retained by the franchise in the auction in January, allowing Delhi Daredevils to snag him up for $430,000.

The Knight Riders' preparation for the tournament has been hit by a serious injury to Mitchell Starc on international duty, with the franchise drafting in England's Tom Curran as replacement. There are also concerns over whether Sunil Narine will be allowed to bowl in the tournament after his bowling action was reported while he was playing in the Pakistan Super League.

Mitchell Johnson, 36, will have to lead the bowling attack in Starc's absence, with support from Kuldeep Yadav, Piyush Chawla and Andre Russell, who is coming into the tournament on the back of serving a one-year ban for a doping violation.

On the batting side of things, much will depend on how Australian opener Chris Lynn and Indian duo Karthik and Robin Uthappa fare.

Former Kolkata player Jacques Kallis serves as the head coach of the franchise for the third straight season and has his job cut out to get the best out of the smallest squad in the IPL of just 19 players.

KKR players to watch

Dinesh Karthik: Karthik comes into IPL 2018 on a high after his heroics for India in the Nidahas Trophy T20 tri-series. Between batting, wicket-keeping and leading the team, the 32-year-old has a lot on his plate.

Chris Lynn: The destructive opener is rated doubtful to play for KKR in the opening week of the tournament due to a shoulder injury. The Kolkata hierarchy have invested a lot in the Australian as their marquee batting talent and will hope he can repay their faith.

KKR squad

Dinesh Karthik (c), Piyush Chawla, Tom Curran, Cameron Delport, Ishank Jaggi, Mitchell Johnson, Kuldeep Yadav, Chris Lynn, Kamlesh Nagarkoti, Sunil Narine, Nitish Rana, Andre Russell, Javon Searles, Shivam Mavi, Shubham Gill, Rinku Singh, Robin Uthappa, Vinay Kumar, Apoorv Wankhade