IPL 2020: Virat Kohli was keen on Royal Challengers Bangalore acquiring Dale Steyn

Sport360 staff 18:06 21/12/2019
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Veteran fast bowler Dale Steyn ,who had a good outing during the recently concluded Mzansi Super League (MSL), was one among the eight cricketers with the highest base price during the the mini auction for IPL 2020.

The 35-year-old who had claimed 15 wickets in the 2019 MSL was picked up by Royal Challengers Bangalore for his base price of $32,000 in the second round of bidding.

The southern franchise also successfully bid for Sri Lanka left-arm pacer Isuru Udana ($70,400). The 31-year-old, who is a T20 specialist, also had a good run in the 2019 MSL, playing for the eventual champions Paarl Rocks and picking 10 wickets.

When RCB head coach Mike Hesson was quizzed on the team’s choice of players during the auction, he revealed that he was in touch with Virat Kohli, throughout the bidding and that the skipper was insistent on having Steyn and Udana in the RCB squad.

“I probably exchanged a couple of hundred messages with Virat for a couple of hours. I think he thought we went to sleep in the middle for a couple of hours as well, but he was well aware of what our planning was. He was keen at the end, as we were, to get Udana and Steyn,” said Hesson.

“We knew we wanted Steyn but we knew if we put a bid on him early, it might have gone up to three or four crores, which would have had flow-on effects,” Hesson said in a video posted by the franchise.

“It was the same with Isuru Udana as well. We thought Udana was going to be well sought after, so we had to slow-play that one a little bit. In the end, it worked out the way we wanted but it did require a sense of patience, which is not one of my main attributes,” he added.

RCB have a formidable pace attack in their squad for IPL 2020, which includes the likes of Umesh Yadav, Kane Richardson, Dale Steyn, Isuru Udana and Chris Morris.

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