'He was visibly disinterested' - Former RCB director Mike Hesson makes big revelation on Yuzvendra Chahal's shock release

The leg-spinner was bought by Rajasthan Royals at the 2022 mega auction and is winning matches for them.

Mathew K
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Yuzvendra Chahal (left) & Mike Hesson (Source: X)

Yuzvendra Chahal (left) & Mike Hesson (Source: X)

Yuzvendra Chahal is one of the greatest spinners in the Indian Premier League (IPL) history. Though he is continuing his fine form with his new franchise Rajasthan Royals (RR), the 33-year-old rose to prominence with his remarkable spell at Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB). His 8-year journey with the blockbuster franchise came to a shocking end when the franchise released him ahead of the 2022 mega auction.

RCB retained three players - Virat Kohli, Glenn Maxwell, and Mohammad Siraj. The decision to drop Chahal and retain Siraj was viewed as a strange move by the fans. The leg-spinner was then bought by RR at the auction and is winning matches for them.

Mike Hesson, who was with the Bangalore-based franchise at that time as the Director of Cricket, recently opened up about Chahal's shock release. The former head coach of the New Zealand cricket team recalled that he spoke to the veteran Indian spinner to explain the reason behind his ouster and he was not interested in listening. 

"Yuzi was communicated with a huge amount. And I know that because I was the guy at the other end of the phone. I remember ringing Yuzi afterwards and he was upset. It was very difficult to try and explain the auction dynamics to him at that time. He was visibly disinterested, and I don't blame him. He was an RCBian and he was frustrated. But I can assure everyone that he is well aware of the issues we were confronted with," Hesson told Cricket.com. 

It was really difficult for us to guarantee: Hesson

The 49-year-old, who parted ways with the franchise ahead of the 2024 IPL, revealed that the team wanted to buy back Chahal and pacer Harshal Patel in the auction. However, things didn't go as planned at the mega event and they could only bring back Harshal, who won the Purple Cap in IPL 2021.

"Obviously when we did the initial retention and we only retained three players because we felt we wanted to try and buy back both Harshal Patel and Yuzi at the auction. Probably the thing that I'm really frustrated about even now is as you said Yuzi is probably one of the top-five players of all time for RCB but he was also one of the best ever in the IPL and the fact that he couldn't make the top two marquee lists at that time was ridiculous, the fact that he came in as number 65 on the auction list means that it was really difficult for us to guarantee we were going to get him," he added. 

Chahal played 113 matches for RCB and went on to become - and still is - their highest wicket-taker. As his replacement, RCB bought Sri Lankan all-rounder Wanindu Hasaranga. 

"We felt we needed to have a decent dip at Wanindu Hasaranga obviously the fact he was, a three-dimensional player, batting for Sri Lanka had been really good at that time, was well, good player of spin and was performing incredibly well on the international stage. So we felt that if we weren't going to get Yuzi, Hasaranga was a really nice option for us," Hesson further explained.

IPL Yuzvendra Chahal RCB