Veteran Indian batsman Robin Uthappa will now play for Chennai Super Kings (CSK) in the 2021 edition of Indian Premier League (IPL) as Rajasthan Royals (RR) have traded him to CSK in an all-cash deal. The trade was confirmed a day after the franchises announced their list of retentions ahead of the February auction for IPL 2021.
— Chennai Super Kings (@ChennaiIPL) January 21, 2021
Uthappa played the 2020 edition in the United Arab Emirates (UAE) for the Royals. He was roped in for INR 3 crore in December 2019. The 35-year-old featured in 12 games last season but failed to impress with the bat. He accumulated just 196 runs without a half-century.
“I really enjoyed my year at the Royals and had a great time being part of this franchise. I am now excited for the next part of my cricketing journey joining CSK for IPL 2021,” said Uthappa as quoted by Cricbuzz.
Uthappa’s move to the Super Kings could strengthen their top order, especially in the absence of the retired Shane Watson. The importance of Uthappa becomes much more important in the ‘Yellow Army’ after they released opener Murali Vijay.
“We’d like to thank Robbie for his contribution during his time with us. He provided significant value building into the season in our camps in Guwahati and Nagpur, and his speech during our World Cup winners session during the season was one of the most powerful we have heard,” said Royals’ COO Jake Lush McCrum in a statement.
“We do have depth with regards to openers in our squad; therefore, when the offer came from CSK, we thought it was a good opportunity for all parties involved. We’d like to wish Robbie all the best for this season at CSK and his future beyond that,” he added.
Since the start of IPL, Uthappa has played every season of the cash-rich league, amassing as many as 4607 runs from 189 games at a strike-rate of 129.99. The right-handed batsman has also smashed 24 half-centuries and bagged an Orange Cap in the 2014 season.
The MS Dhoni-led Super Kings shall be the sixth franchise Uthappa will play for. He has so far represented Mumbai Indians (2008), Royal Challengers Bangalore (2009-10), Pune Warriors (2011-13), Kolkata Knight Riders (2014-19) and the Royals (2020).