After his consistent performance in T20I cricket, Wanindu Hasaranga has found great success in a short time. The Sri Lanka all-rounder has been signed by Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) for the second leg of IPL 2021. RCB head coach Mike Hesson has revealed that the Sri Lanka youngster was on their radar for a long time. Wanindu Hasaranga bagged the spotlight in his debut game itself after claiming a hat-trick.
The 24-year-old player has also risen to the no.2 spot in T20I bowling rankings after his magnificent bowling performance in the shortest format of the game. He was also the player of the tournament in the Sri Lanka Premier League 2020. In Sri Lanka vs India recent T20I series in July, he won the player of the tournament award. The leg spinner’s 4-wicket haul also became a crucial reason for India’s batting collapse in the final T20I game.
Wanindu Hasaranga Has Been On Our Radar For A Long Time: RCB Coach Mike Hesson
While speaking to Hindustan Times, RCB Head Coach Mike Hesson revealed that it is not Wanindu Hasaranga’s performance against India which made them pick him. Instead, Hesson revealed that the franchise was looking to sign the Sri Lanka cricketer for a long time.
“We have a scouting program that has been in place for the last two years where we know almost every player that is playing cricket around the world at a decent level. Wanindu had been on our radar for a long time. In fact, we needed a replacement in the last IPL, he was certainly the person we called upon. It’s not a recency factor,” Mike Hesson said.
“We are not surprised by his success in recent times, but he has been doing it for a while. We like his skillset, and we like the fact that he is a multi-skilled cricketer.
“So, he offers us the ability to bat a little bit deeper as well if we choose to play the overseas spinner along with Chahal. And that gives us a lot of exciting options so the fact that he performed well against India in recent times is great, but certainly not surprising,” Hesson further added.
Wanindu Hasaranga has been signed by Royal Challengers Bangalore as a replacement to Adam Zampa. The latter opted out of the tournament during the first leg of IPL 2021 due to personal reasons. Under Royal Challengers Bangalore, the Sri Lankan player will play under skipper Virat Kohli.
IPL 2021 will commence on September 21 in UAE, with the first game between Chennai Super Kings and Mumbai Indians. The encounter will take place in Dubai. The first leg of IPL 2021 was postponed after few players and support staff members were affected by Covid-19.
Now, the rest of the game under the UAE leg will be played from September 19. The tournament will conclude with the final game on October 15.