Mike Hesson Reveals How Desperately Virat Kohli And RCB Wanted Dale Steyn At The Auction
The director of cricket of Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB), Mike Hesson disclosed that both Virat Kohli and RCB were eager to get their hands on Dale Steyn. However, the South African pacer Dale Steyn had been with RCB in the starting seasons of the Indian Premier League. And then in the last edition of IPL, Steyn was called in by the franchise as a replacement for the injured Nathan Coulter-Nile.
Even though being one of the finest pacers in world cricket, Steyn was not picked by any franchise in the first two rounds of the big auction night on 19th December. However, RCB and Kohli both had their eyes on this quality bowler.
Steyn already saw himself sitting out of the event for two continuous seasons of the cash-rich league. And with no one bidding for him in the first two rounds of the auctions, it seemed like a possibility that he would once again go unsold. However, RCB has seen the worth of the Proteas fast-bowler earlier and planned things in such a way that they would definitely get the cricketer at the auction.
Earlier, Steyn had been with RCB from 2008 to 2010, where he plucked 27 wickets in the 28 matches. However, in the fourth edition of the twenty-overs tournament, the Proteas bowler was successfully snatched by now-defunct Deccan Chargers.
Hesson explained the reason behind the last time bid for Steyn:
Apart from RCB and Deccan Chargers, Steyn had played for Sunrisers Hyderabad (2013-2015) and now-defunct Gujarat Lions (2016). But due to sustained injuries for a long period of time, Steyn could not perform his best in the game in the 2015 and 2016 season. After that, he was seen again with the Kohli-led squad in the 12th edition of the IPL where once again he endured injuries after the two matches he played that cost him the ICC Cricket World Cup 2019 also.
Nevertheless, RCB has seen the best that came from Steyn when on the field and they couldn’t take any risks. Mike Hesson, after the auction night, revealed that it was teams’ and Kohli’s plan all along to take in Steyn anyhow. He reasoned that they had to wait till the end to get their paddles up in the air for the cricketer so that they wouldn’t have to face the bidding war for the cricketer.
“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 crore, which would have had flow-on effects,” Mike Hesson said in a video posted by the franchise.
Hesson also cleared that the RCB skipper Virat Kohli was keen to get Steyn back in the team. The Director of Cricket of RCB revealed how he had to keep talking to Kohli to keep him posted about the situation.
“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,” he said.
RCB bought a total of eight players during the auction night where Chris Morris, Aaron Finch, Kane Richardson, and Dale Steyn were the four big names.
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