Former Sri Lankan captain and current head of the Marylebone Cricket Club [MCC] Kumar Sangakkara has been appointed as the director of cricket by inaugural IPL champions Rajasthan Royals ahead of the 2021 season.
The move comes on a day when Rajasthan Royals decided to part ways with Australian legend and their erstwhile skipper Steve Smith. Smith is among the eight players that have been released by the Rajasthan-based franchise.
Kerala swashbuckler Sanju Samson has been appointed as captain of the Rajasthan Royals ahead of the 2021 season.
— Rajasthan Royals (@rajasthanroyals) January 20, 2021
This will be the first time that Kumar Sangakkara will take over a managerial role in the IPL after having featured in his capacity as a player for franchises like Kings XI Punjab and Deccan Chargers in the past.
The Royals owner confirmed Sangakkara’s appointment as ‘Director of Cricket’. Confirming the news of Samson being appointed as captain and Kumar Sangakkara’s as ‘director of cricket’, Manoj Badale said-
“Sanju is at the start of his journey as a leader – and Kumar Sangakkara is joining as a director of cricket. He’s understated and is a very, very strong individual. [Being a] Wicketkeeper is a great position to captain the team,” Badale said.
Meanwhile, Rajasthan Royals have retained as many as 17 players from their 2020 squad which includes the newly appointed skipper Sanju Samson, Ben Stokes, Jofra Archer, Jos Buttler, Yashasvi Jaiswal, Robin Uthappa, Mayank Markande, Kartik Tyagi, Andrew Tye, Anuj Rawat, David Miller, Riyan Parag, Mahipal Lomror, Shreyas Gopal and Manan Vohra, Rahul Tewatia, Jaydev Unadkat.
The list of released players includes Steve Smith, Ankit Rajpoot, Varun Aaron, Shashank Singh, Anirudha Joshi, Tom Curran, Akash Singh, and Oshane Thomas.