De Villiers' sharp remark on PBKS' ultra-expensive signing: ‘Overpaid for…’ | Cricket - Hindustan Times
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AB de Villiers' sharp remark on PBKS' ultra-expensive signing before IPL 2024: 'He’s been overpaid for...'

By, New Delhi
Dec 22, 2023 06:22 AM IST

RCB icon AB de Villiers might have raised a few eyebrows with his blunt remark about the Punjab Kings star ahead of the IPL 2024.

Punjab Kings (PBKS) had an eventful auction in the lead-up to the 2024 season of the Indian Premier League (IPL). Runners-up in the 2014 edition of the cash-rich league, Punjab Kings' office bearers sparked a controversy over the signing of cricketer Shashank Singh during the accelerated phase of the mini-auction in Dubai on Tuesday. The Punjab Kings heavyweights opted to spend heavily to recruit former Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) star Harshal Patel for the new season.

AB de Villiers might have raised a few eyebrows with his recent remark(BCCI-PTI)
AB de Villiers might have raised a few eyebrows with his recent remark(BCCI-PTI)

Released by RCB prior to the Dubai auction, Harshal was sold to Punjab Kings for a staggering sum of INR 11.75 crore. The highest wicket-taker in the 2021 season of the IPL, pacer Harshal enjoyed three bitter-sweet seasons with the Bangalore-based franchise. However, the Indian pacer and lower-order batter had a mediocre season in 2023 as he finished with 14 wickets. The pacer had a questionable economy of 9.66 for RCB at IPL 2023. Sold for more than INR 11 crore, was Harshal overpaid at the auction?

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'Harshal going for a pretty…'

Legendary South African cricketer AB de Villiers feels Harshal's price tag is still justified as the ex-RCB star can take up the all-rounder role at the Punjab franchise. Harshal was also unveiled as an all-rounder before his name sparked a bidding war at the auction. “Harshal going for a pretty nifty 11.75 crore. I don’t think that’s being overpaid. He’s a fantastic player. He is a wonderful T20 cricketer. He can also hit the cricket ball. The slower ball that he bowls bamboozles a lot of batters,” De Villiers said on his YouTube channel.

However, there is one such player whom De Villiers believes has been overpaid in the IPL for quite a few years. According to the RCB icon, England all-rounder Sam Curran has struggled to live up to his ultra-expensive price tag at the IPL. Curran shattered an IPL auction record when Punjab Kings acquired the services of the Englishman for 18.50 crore last year.

‘Don’t like to be controversial but…’

“I don’t like to be controversial. But, in my opinion, he’s been overpaid for quite a few years now. He’s not a bad player; I like him. He’s had a fantastic World Cup, but that’s quite a few years back. I don’t think he’s had a very good IPL recently. Also, for England, he hasn’t played exceptionally well," De Villiers opined. Curran bagged 10 wickets and scored 276 runs for Shikhar Dhawan's men last season.

'Nothing against Sam Curran'

Curran is one of the eight overseas stars at Punjab for IPL 2024. The England all-rounder was retained by PBKS for the upcoming season. “He can turn things around like most world-class players can. Nothing against Sam Curran. I still think he’s a wonderful player. I just think he’s been overpaid for a few years. Maybe it would have been a good move for them to let him go to open up some funds to buy different players,” De Villiers added.

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