Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) head coach Mike Hesson has revealed why they roped in Sri Lanka spinner Wanindu Hasaranga for the remainder of IPL 2021. The second phase of IPL 2021 will take place in the UAE, starting from September 19. Incidentally, Hasaranga grabbed the eyeballs with his exemplary performances in the limited-overs series against India.
The 24-year-old rose to the no.2 spot in the ICC T20I bowling rankings after his magnificent bowling. He was also the player of the tournament in the Sri Lanka Premier League 2020. In the T20I series against India in July, Wanindu Hasaranga won the player of the tournament award. The leg spinner’s 4-wicket haul also became a crucial reason for India’s batting collapse in the final T20I game.
🔊 ANNOUNCEMENT 🔊
We’re thrilled to welcome Sri Lankan all-rounder Wanidu Hasaranga to the RCB Family for the second leg of #IPL 2021 in UAE. He replaces Adam Zampa. #PlayBold #WeAreChallengers #IPL2021 #NowAChallenger pic.twitter.com/nEf6mtRcNt
— Royal Challengers Bangalore (@RCBTweets) August 21, 2021
Speaking to Hindustan Times, RCB Head Coach Mike Hesson revealed that it is not Wanindu Hasaranga’s performance against India which made them pick him. Instead, Hesson revealed that the franchise was looking to sign the Sri Lanka cricketer for a long time.
“We have a scouting program that has been in place for the last two years where we know almost every player that is playing cricket around the world at a decent level. Wanindu had been on our radar for a long time. In fact, we needed a replacement in the last IPL, he was certainly the person we called upon. It’s not a recency factor,” Mike Hesson said.
“We are not surprised by his success in recent times, but he has been doing it for a while. We like his skillset, and we like the fact that he is a multi-skilled cricketer. So, he offers us the ability to bat a little bit deeper as well if we choose to play the overseas spinner along with Chahal. And that gives us a lot of exciting options so the fact that he performed well against India in recent times is great, but certainly not surprising,” Hesson further added.
“Excited and honoured” – Wanindu Hasaranga reacts after maiden IPL 2021 contract
Wanindu Hasaranga, who joined Royal Challengers Bangalore as Adam Zampa’s replacements, was excited with his selection. Taking to Twitter, he wrote:
“From sitting at home and watching them, to being a part of an amazing team.”
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