'Mumbai Indians, RCB have done an RKO out of nowhere': Ashwin's bombastic take on Hardik Pandya, Cameron Green IPL move
Having earlier called it a golden deal for Mumbai Indians, Ashwin admitted that he was left stunned at Mumbai's move, calling it an "RKO out of nowhere".
On Sunday, India all-rounder Hardik Pandya completed the much-speculated move of returning back to his former franchise Mumbai Indians after spending two seasons as a captain in Gujarat Titans. He had in fact led the Titans to a title win in their debut season in 2022 before ending as runner-up in 2023. Mumbai Indians, on the other hand, in a bid to fit in Hardik into the squad, offloaded a big signing in Cameron Green with the Australia all-rounder traded to Royal Challengers Bangalore. Having earlier called it a golden deal for Mumbai Indians, Ravichandran Ashwin admitted that he was left stunned at Mumbai's move, calling it an "RKO out of nowhere".
Hardik was Mumbai's find back in 2015 when he was roped in for just INR 10 lakhs as an uncapped player. In the seven seasons he stayed with the franchise, Hardik rose through the ranks, cementing his spot as a core member of the side before breaking into the Indian team across formats as well. He was eventually released by Mumbai ahead of the 2022 mega auctions when Gujarat signed him as their captain. However, on Sunday, hours after GT retained their captain, Hardik moved back to the Mumbai franchise in an all-cash deal.
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Meanwhile, in a separate trade, MI traded Green to RCB, who was bought for a whopping ₹17.50 lakhs at the auction last December. He had played 16 matches for the franchise last year which included an unbeaten century as well with two fifties and six wickets.
Speaking on his YouTube channel, Ashwin reckoned that it was never a like-for-like swap for Mumbai Indians, who have struck gold by getting back Hardik, who has now evolved into a T20 captain during his stay at Gujarat.
Ashwin's video caption on the Green-Hardik move read: “Here is my IPL Retention Episode which you read in the Thumbnail. Mumbai Indians and RCB have done an RKO OUT OF NOWHERE by Getting Hardik and Cameron Green into their Teams.”
Ashwin feels that with Hardik returning, Mumbai Indians look well set already before the auction next month in Dubai.
“Green has left Mumbai Indians for RCB. It is a straight swap. Mumbai Indians have cleared their purse. Hardik for Green is a strange swap. They have money for one spinner and one overseas fast bowler and it is pretty much clear for Mumbai. It's done and dusted. They have landed gold. I mean it is not even a like-to-like because MI have got the Indian T20 captain who has won an IPL and came runner-up in 2023. Basically he went to GT, became a leader, got an MBA degree and came back home,” he added.
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