‘Bangar told me, ‘We’ve lost out on AB. You’ll be playing…’: Karthik tells Virat Kohli his first conversation with RCB

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Dinesh Karthik has been in the form of his life in the ongoing 2022 Indian Premier League where he has already scored 197 runs in six innings at a strike rate of 209 and boundary rate of just three balls. The run tally also included his blistering 34-ball 66 against Delhi Capitals on Saturday at the Wankhede Stadium which helped Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) in winning by 16 runs. Following the win, Karthik recalled the conversation he had with coach Sanjay Bangar and how the clarity of role helped him prepare according for the season.

Karthik, who was part of Kolkata Knight Riders in the previous season and had even led them for half the tournament, was roped in for INR 5.5 crore by RCB at the mega auction in February. Speaking to Kohli after the Delhi Capitals game, Karthik revealed that he had received a phone call from Bangar on RCB losing AB de Villiers and that he will be playing the role of a finisher in the team.

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“I think there’s a small-term goal and there’s a bigger version as well. So, I think the small-term goal is to do well for the RCB. So, I think credit to the RCB backroom staff. The day I got picked, Sanjay bhai called and told me, ‘DK you’ll be playing the finisher’s role’. We have lost out on AB so we can’t replace him with anybody who is half as good as him. So, we are going to have 2-3 players who will try and do that role. He is that good,” he said.

“So, then I took it upon myself to figure out that this is what I need to do. I have been practising for so long and that was the small-term goal.”

De Villiers, who was part of the RCB team since 2011, had announced his retirement from all forms of cricket at the end of the 2021 season. He ended his IPL career with 5162 runs in 184 appearances.


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