IPL 2023: How a surprise call from RCB head coach Sanjay Bangar got Kedar Jadhav into the side

New Delhi, May 4 (IANS) Veteran middle-order batter Kedar Jadhav revealed how he got back into the Royal Challengers Bangalore side after having a surprise conversation on a call with head coach Sanjay Bangar.

Jadhav was drafted into the RCB side as a replacement for David Wiley, who picked up a toe injury during the ongoing Indian Premier League (IPL) 2023 season. He represented RCB previously in 2016 and 2017, playing 17 matches and scoring 311 runs at an average of 23.92 and a strike rate of 142.66.

“I was doing commentary and Sanjay Bhai called me asking what I was doing. I told him I was commentating. He inquired whether I was still practising and I replied in the affirmative — twice a week, I replied.”

“Bangar then asked me about my fitness to which I said I was regular at the gym and even using it in my hotel. In short, I told him I was in good shape. He asked for a time and said he’ll call me back. It was that moment I realized that he would call me and tell me to play for RCB,” Jadhav was quoted as saying in a franchise release.

Before being given a call-up by RCB, Jadhav was doing Marathi commentary on IPL 2023 for digital rights holder JioCinema.

“Absolutely surprised, but a pleasant one. I am very excited and want to thank the support staff for giving me this opportunity to join the team and make sure I give my 110 per cent,” he added.

The right-handed batter, who has played 73 ODIs for India apart from nine T20Is, was in terrific form for Maharashtra in the 2022/23 Ranji Trophy, with standout performances being 283 against Assam and 128 against Mumbai. Jadhav now hopes to replicate the same performances for RCB in the remainder of IPL 2023.

“I took a break for a year but then I realised that I was missing my passion and when I returned to first-class cricket, I found it very easy. To be honest it was because of the experience I have. It was the same hunger I had in the early ’20s, the hunger to score big runs and that’s when I felt I can now come back and play again at all the levels and I was prepared for it, I’ve always performed well.”

RCB will play their next match in IPL 2023 against Delhi Capitals at the Arun Jaitley Stadium on Saturday and will be aiming to register another remarkable victory to boost their chances of making it to the playoffs.

–IANS

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