IPL 2022: Harshal Patel recalls how he bagged his first contract with RCB

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India pacer Harshal Patel recalled his old days as a rookie bowler in the Indian Premier League franchise’s Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB), saying back-to-back success in the Ranji Trophy matches made the way for him into the league.

“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,” speaking on the RCB Podcast, Patel said.

“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.

RCB acquired Harshal Patel (Rs 10.75 crore) at the IPL mega auction 2022. The franchise also bought Sri Lankan leg-spinner Wanindu Hasaranga (Rs 10.75 crore), Australian pacer Josh Hazlewood (Rs 7.75 crore), and South Africa’s veteran batsman Faf du Plessis (Rs 7 crore).

The 31-year-old Haryana cricketer remembered his childhood, saying he was a kind of a troublemaker kid.

“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.

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