‘I Was Shocked’: Harshal Patel Recalls How Royal Challengers Bangalore Approached Him For Trials

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Harshal Patel remained the hot pick for RCB in the IPL mega auction 2022 held last weekend. The 31-year old was acquired for a whopping Rs 10.75 crore. Recalling his old days as a rookie bowler in the Indian Premier League franchise’s Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB), he said “back-to-back success in the Ranji Trophy matches made the way for him into the league.”

Harshal Patel went down the memory lane

Speaking on the official RCB podcast, Patel said “RCB approached me and asked if I was open to coming for their trials and of course, I had shown my interest. We went on to play the semi-final of the Ranji Trophy. I took eight-wicket hauls back-to-back and that is when Avinash Vaidya said Anil Kumble wants to speak to me, I was shocked. It took me a while to get back to my senses. They then offered me a contract and I was on board.”

“10 years ago, it was the first time I got into the IPL, and again how I got into IPL is again a fascinating story. I was playing for Haryana, my first-ever Ranji trophy season. I had played five games and taken nine wickets so nothing fancy there. When we qualified and played against Karnataka, I took eight-wicket, and it gave me the confidence to perform at that level,” he added.

The 31-year-old also recalled his childhood days and being a troublemaker as a kid talking on the RCB podcast.

“I was kind of a troublemaker when I was a kid. My mom decided that she doesn’t want me to play with these kids who she claimed as hooligans. I joined a cricket academy. On my first day at the academy, I realized I was better than most of the children there even though I have no formal training in cricket. This made me realise I am really good at it, and at the age of 13, it gives you a feeling that you are the king of everything. But, as always, the bubbles were to burst at some time. Early cricketing memories are brilliant, and I love the game,” he said.

Last year was the best season for Harshal as he went on to bag a record 32 wickets in 2021 IPL and remained crowned as the Purple Cap until the end. Harshal was traded to RCB in 2021 for INR 20 lakh, but will now earn INR 10.75 crore (USD 1.4 million) which is 53.75 times his previous salary.

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