Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) has roped in New Zealand pacer and all-rounder Scott Kuggeleijn as the replacement for Kane Richardson for the remainder of IPL 2021. The development took place after Richardson pulled out from the tournament midway to return to Australia.
The 29-year old Scott Kuggeleijn has featured in 2 ODIs and 16 T20Is, scalping 5 wickets and 13 wickets in the formats, respectively. The right-arm fast-medium has also appeared in two IPL games previously for Chennai Super Kings. Kuggeleijn was serving as a reserve player for the Mumbai Indians for this season of IPL.
RCB announced on Monday that the Australian pair Adam Zampa and Kane Richardson have decided to leave the squad to return home. Both of them made the decision possibly and likely due to the surge in the cases of COVID-19 in the wake of the second wave of the pandemic in the country. However, RCB cited “personal reasons” for their decision.
“Official Announcement: Adam Zampa & Kane Richardson are returning to Australia for personal reasons and will be unavailable for the remainder of #IPL2021. Royal Challengers Bangalore management respects their decision and offers them complete support,” RCB wrote on their official Twitter handle earlier, announcing the departure of Zampa and Richardson.
With the Australian players leaving the bubble of the RCB squad, the franchise was left with only six overseas players. And only three fast bowlers as their options- New Zealand’s Kyle Jamieson, and Australia’s Daniel Sams and Dan Christian. Although RCB has recruited a replacement for Richardson, the franchise is yet to announce the replacement of Adam Zampa.
Richardson and Zampa have joined the crew of the players who have pulled out of the tournament halfway as its fourth and fifth members. Earlier, their Australian compatriot Andrew Tye of Rajasthan Royals (RR) traveled back to Australia to avoid getting caught up in the risky situation of the pandemic. England player Liam Livingstone also left the RR squad citing “bubble fatigue”. Delhi Capitals player R Ashwin left the tournament to spend time with his family.
While Richardson played one game for RCB this season, Zampa did not feature in a single game this time.