Former Rajasthan Royals captain Steven Smith, who was banned from playing in the IPL 2018 a few days back has been replaced by South African batting star Heinrich Klaasen. The captaincy duty was earlier given to Ajinkya Rahane who has been a part of the Rajasthan Royals camp since 2011.
Heinrich Klaasen was the architect of their T20I win in the second match of the series against India at Centurion. Klaasen’s quickfire knock of 69 in just 30 balls enabled South Africa to chase down India’s 188 in just 18.4 overs.
Klassen was unsold in the IPL 2018 auction held in January and was available in the Registered and Available Player Pool (RAPP). The Royals have bagged him at his base price of Rs. 50 lakhs.
Rajasthan Royals head of cricket Zubin Bharucha said that Klaasen was an amazing player of spin and has a vast array of shots, which tempted them to go for him. He was asked the reason for not making a like-for-like replacement of Steve Smith. He said that they were also thinking about the future and when Smith returns to play, they would not have two same players.
The 26-year-old is happy to be a part of the IPL franchise as he said, ”I am thankful to the Rajasthan Royals for giving me this opportunity and making me part of the squad. It would be my first IPL and in fact, my first ever visit to India so I am really excited to be teaming up and sharing the dressing room with some great names. I have made it my mission to ensure my performance makes a large impact for my team in the tournament.”
Rajasthan Royals will start their campaign against Sunrisers Hyderabad on 9 April 2018 in their night game at the Rajiv Gandhi International Stadium in Hyderabad as per the IPL schedule .Tune in to Sportskeeda.com for the latest IPL news, IPL live score, IPL Schedule and other updates