Chennai: Gautam Gambhir, the newly-appointed captain of the Kolkata Knight Riders, hopes to deliver strong results in the 2011 Indian Premier League that would bring happiness to the "City of Joy".
Gambhir, whom the Knight Riders purchased for a record $2.4 million in the January auction, said he was not concerned with his new team's track record in the tournament, and preferred to look ahead.
"All that is history," he said referring to Knight Riders' poor record in the previous three seasons of the IPL when they twice finished sixth and last in 2009. "I look forward to the new season and as a professional cricketer, I will give my 100 percent to my team."
The Knight Riders will take on hosts and champions Chennai Super Kings here Friday when the IPL kicks off with an opening ceremony.
Gambhir also declined to dwell on the just-concluded World Cup, saying that it was history and the IPL was a new tournament that he would now focus on.
"World Cup is history and we are all excited to play the IPL. Like I said, we are all professional cricketers and give our best. Let's see what happens then," he said.
The Knight Riders will be without Aussie fast bowlers Brett Lee and James Pattison, but Gambhir felt that it would provide opportunity for others to step up and perform.
"What we don't have, we don't have. It is a chance for others to go out there and prove themselves. We have other options," he said.
On going up against his India captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni who would be leading the Super Kings team, Gambhir felt that it wouldn't alter his approach to the game as a professional cricketer.
"I am not concerned about that. After all, I am a professional cricketer. My heart and soul are with KKR. This is a different tournament and I am not concerned about what Dhoni might do. My focus is on our team. I just want to go out there and give 100 percent," said Gambhir.
On leading a team that was put together from a scratch after the Knight Riders lost, Gambhir felt it would not be a handicap as the players had spent some time together trying to get to know each other.
"We have had some meetings. It is not about how much time you spend together on the field, but off it. I am sure, as professional cricketers, we will give our best," he said.