The Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) ended the Indian Premier League (IPL) auction with 22 players on their roster ahead of the upcoming edition of the tournament. The franchise added star players like Wanindu Hasaranga, Faf du Plessis, Harshal Patel, Josh Hazlewood, and Dinesh Karthik among others to their squad in the auction. The side had already retained the services of Virat Kohli, Glenn Maxwell, and Mohammed Siraj in December last year.
Hasaranga and Patel were the joint-highest buys for RCB in the mega auction this year (both at INR 10.75 crore). In a video released by the RCB on Sunday, the franchise’s director of cricket operations Mike Hesson termed Hasaranga as the “most important overseas purchase” for RCB; the video was shot before the auction and revealed key insights into the side’s planning for the Sri Lankan spinner.
“We look at Hasaranga being our most important overseas purchase. We have allocated 10 (crore) there,” Hesson said.
“Now in our mock auctions, we have averaged INR 8.5 (crore), which gives us some leeway to spend and maneuver this spend. We have to budget high because he’s such an important person, because there’s no one else who does the same job he does in terms of being able to bat in that role and providing that balance.”
Despite having an allocated budget of INR 10 crore for Hasaranga, RCB overpaid by INR 75 lakh to secure his services.
Hesson also revealed in the same video that the side wanted to get Yuzvendra Chahal back to the squad, but the auction dynamics made it difficult for them to allocate the necessary budget.
“If we knew we could get Yuzi, then we will try to get Yuzi. We love Yuzi. The fact that he is coming up when he’s coming up, (coupled with) the volatility and the chance of getting him and with teams that have a bigger budget, it is so risky that if you end up not getting Hasaranga, you get yourself stuck. That’s the volatility and that’s a massive risk,” Hesson said.
Following the auction, the franchise’s head coach Sanjay Bangar had expressed his delight in securing the services of Chahal.
“Number one is that he’s an RCB player. He’s somebody who performed exceedingly well for Sri Lanka in all matches he played. His performance in the T20 format was phenomenal, and he’s a multi-skilled player,” Bangar had said.