IPL 2018: Steve Smith steps down, Ajinkya Rahane takes over as Rajasthan captain

New Delhi, News Nation Bureau | Updated : 26 March 2018, 07:07 PM
Rajasthan Royals sack Steve Smith, appoint Ajinkya Rahane as captain (Source: PTI)
Rajasthan Royals sack Steve Smith, appoint Ajinkya Rahane as captain (Source: PTI)

The Rajasthan Royals franchise of the Indian Premier League (IPL) 2018 has sacked Steve Smith as the captain and appointed Ajinkya Rahane to lead the team.

The news comes in the wake of the ball tampering row which started on Saturday when Australian opener Camron Bancroft was seen putting a ‘yellow tape’ inside his pants. The whole incident came to be seen on the large screen, after which Australian captain Steve Smith admitted to the whole tampering issue.

The Cricket Australia took a firm decision and handed a one-match suspension, along with fining 100 per cent of his match fee.

The Rajasthan Royals confirmed the news on their official twitter handle, and wrote, “Rajasthan Royals appoint @ajinkyarahane88 as the captain for #IPL2018. “The game is bigger than any individual and we hold this thought close to our heart.”- Manoj Badale, the co-owner of Rajasthan Royals.”

Rajasthan Royals released a whole media release in which Manoj Badale, the co-owner of Rajasthan Royals, said, “Ajinkya Rahane has been an integral part of the Royals family for a long time now and he understands the culture and values of our team. We have absolutely no doubt that he will be a great leader of the Rajasthan Royals.”

Badale added, “Rajasthan Royals will do everything possible to protect the values and the integrity of the game. We agree with Steve’s decision to step down as captain, and we are fortunate to have such a capable successor with Ajinkya Rahane. It is important that all cricket fans retain a balanced perspective on the situation. What happened in South Africa was clearly wrong, especially given that it appears to have been pre-meditated. That said, this will be a difficult time for Steve as well, given how much he cares about the game.”

Read Rajasthan Royals' full statement here

Smith admitted to the ball-tampering row and said, “We spoke about it at Lunch and I’m not proud of it. It’s not within the spirit of the game, my integrity or the team’s integrity, the leadership group’s integrity has all come to question and rightly so. It’s not on and it certainly won’t happen again I can promise you that.”

First Published: Monday, March 26, 2018 03:42 PM
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