All-rounder Yuvraj Singh, who today became Indian Premier League’s costliest ever buy by going for a whopping Rs 16 crore to Delhi Daredevils, said that he was happy to be playing again under former India coach Gary Kirsten.
“I was sleeping when the auction was going on. I came to know of this only when some guests came to my house and told me about the good news. The best part is, I am going to play under Kirsten. I had my best years under him and hopefully I can repeat that with Delhi,” Yuvraj said after he was bought for the record sum at the IPL 8 player auction in Bangalore.
Kirsten, who was present at the auction along with top team officials, said that his franchise had come prepared to go all out bidding for Yuvraj.
“You want to know that throughout the season you have various combinations to fall back on. I think we learned from last year that if we want a player we need to push hard for him. Hence we were prepared to go all the way with Yuvraj and it’s great for the player as well,” the South African said.
“Yuvraj can add good value to the side. We don’t know, it’s always the thing with the auction. At last year’s auction we thought we had a good team. Tough space the auction, trying to go on with the players who think can make a difference,” he added.
Asked who will captain the Daredevils now that the side also have current Sri Lanka skipper Angelo Mathews who was bought for Rs 7.5 crore, Kirsten said the leadership issue will be decided later.
“Havent made a decision. Mathews does come into the mix as captain. We kad looked for players that we feel can be senior players in their international side, leaders in their own right and Angelo will add to that,” he said.
Delhi Daredevils CEO Hemant Dua said Yuvraj would fill in the gap of having an icon player in the IPL side and the sponsors would like it.
“We did not expect Yuvraj to go for that price. Yes, he is a very valuable asset. More than cricket, he brings in charisma. He brings in brand role to the team, and I am sure the sponsors would like that. I think we were lacking some form of an icon player in our team,” he said.
Dua said they wanted Yuvraj in the team as he brings in lot of talent in the team with a good domestic season behind him this year.
“We wanted him definitely. He brings lot of talent in the team and the combination we have. I think he is hungry and wants to play. He has had a good domestic season,” he said.
“From the perspective of the team think tank, I think the three buys we have got – Yuvraj, Angelo Mathews and Amit Mishra – they all fit in the team combination,” Dua said, adding that the captaincy issue will be decided by coach Kirsten.
Sunrisers Hyderabad coach Tom Moody said his side wanted former England captain Kevin Pietersen, who was bought for Rs 2 crore (base price), even solely as a batsman.
“We will assess the team after the auctions. We were interested in getting Kevin Pietersen as a batsman, however he has got leadership capabilities. Nevetheless, the intention was to select him as a batsman,” he said.
Asked about Pietersen and current England captain Eoin Morgan being in the same side, Moody said, “My understanding is that they are best friends. So, we are very comfortable to have both the players in the team. Kevin’s position is nothing to do with Morgan. It is something to do with the English Cricket Board.”