Steve Smith has been officially named as the captain of Rajasthan Royals for the next edition of Indian Premier League (IPL), scheduled to be commenced on April 7.
The announcement was made on Saturday (February 24) and it didn’t come as a surprise since Smith was always the frontrunner to get the job. He was first bought by Rajasthan Royals in the 2014 IPL auction for $600,000. Even before taking up the Australian captaincy, Smith had led the Rajasthan-based franchise in the latter half of the 2015 season and took the team to the play-offs.
Ecstatic to be back in the Royal camp after playing for Rising Pune Supergiant in the last two seasons, Smith is excited with the prospect of working with the legendary Shane Warne.
”It is great to be back at [Rajasthan] Royals. I was with the franchise a few years back. We had a great time. Thanks for giving me the honour and privilege of leading the Royals. I am looking forward to have a successful campaign. Looking forward to working with Warne,” Smith said according to Indian Express.
Just a week ago, Warne had disclosed that he will be mentoring the inaugural IPL champions Rajasthan Royals in 2018 and he is looking forward to work with Steve Smith.
“I’ve watched Smith bat through the years, watched him captain the national side. I think he’s the best batsman in Test cricket.” Warne quoted as saying by Cricbuzz.
“Really looking forward to working closely with Smith and hearing his thoughts. Looking forward to helping him if I can and taking the team forward,” he added.
It is pertinent to mention here Rajasthan Royals will make a return to the cash-rich Indian Premier League after completing the two-year termination. Rajasthan Royals along with Chennai Super Kings were barred from the IPL for the past two editions because of corruption and fixing allegations against their respective owners.