Harshal Patel was not retained by his franchise Royal Challengers Bengaluru despite giving his all. The 31-year-old became the purple cap holder, and also aced in bowling those slow Yorkers which made him a street-smart bowler. But then IPL is altogether a different beast. When asked about his reaction on not being retained, Patel said that coach Mike Hesson informed him about the decision, terming it ‘purse management.’
“When I was not retained, Mike Hesson (RCB’s Director of Cricket) called me and said, that it was mainly purse management. They would obviously love to have me back in the team and I too would obviously would love to go back and play for the team because RCB and this season (2021) changed my entire career and my entire life. However, in terms of auction, I haven’t heard from any franchises yet,” Patel told cricktracker.
Surely, he would like to don the red jersey once again as it was RCB which transformed him into a terrific death bowler. He said RCB must have done its homework while buying him as he had never bowled in the death overs.
“I had never bowled death overs in IPL prior to the 2021 season. So, when they (RCB) traded me (from Delhi Capitals), they had done their homework. They probably saw the ingredients in me to become a good death bowler and they said: “We want you to take this responsibility and we’ll back you to do this.” So, it came from them. I didn’t expect that to happen.”
He was having a superb IPL which included a fifer against Mumbai Indians, but then he lost a bit of momentum where he was slammed 37 runs by Ravindra Jadeja in a match against CSK. He said one mustn’t take oneself seriously in professional sport.
“The one thing you learn in professional sport after 11 years is that you can’t take anything too seriously. As if you start taking these things too seriously, it will be very difficult to sustain. Yes, I made a few mistakes (in that over). I didn’t execute what I wanted to and the batter (Ravindra Jadeja) had a fantastic day. If he had an average day, he would probably miss one or two. So, I had a very bad day as I couldn’t execute a single yorker and he got under each and every delivery.”
“So, you need to accept, take it in your stride and move on. You very quickly understand that it was error in execution. I suddenly didn’t become a bad bowler because prior to that over, I had picked up three wickets. So, my skill was always there, it was just a matter of execution.”