Royal Challengers Bangalore announced several changes to their combination ahead of the IPL 2021 in UAE, including roping in Sri Lanka’s Wanindu Hasaranga as a replacement for Adam Zampa.
Head coach Simon Katich stepped down due to personal reasons as well, leaving Mike Hesson to take over his role in addition to being Director of Cricket.
In other changes, Sri Lanka’s Dushmantha Chameera replaced Daniel Sams.
Tim David replaced Finn Allenn.
Allenn and Scott Kuggeleign will be with the New Zealand team while Kane Richardson and Daniel Sams are unavailable.
Hasaranga, the legspinner and lower order hitter, was impressive in India’s series against Sri Lanka picking up 7 wickets from 3 matches to be Man of the Series.
Hesson explained the franchise had their eyes on Hasaranga for a while.
He said “We have a scouting programme for at least the last two years where we know players around the world. Wanindu was in our radar for a long time. It’s certainly not a recency factor. We’re not surprised by his success in recent times. We like his skillset, offers us the chance to bat a little bit deep. Gives us a lot of exciting options. The fact that he performed against India is great, but not surprising.”
The Indian players, support staff and the team management will be assembling in Bengaluru on August 21 following which the team will undergo 7 days of quarantine and will undergo Covid tests for 3 days during the period.
The team will then depart via a chartered flight from Bangalore on August 29.
The other international players and staff will assemble in the UAE starting August 29.
There will be another 6 days of quarantine in the UAE.
RCB have won 5 of their seven matches, and Hesson said they have to repeat the processes that made them successful.