No real emotional connection with RCB owners but CSK was incredible experience: Shane Watson on IPL stints
Former Australian all-rounder and World Cup winner Shane Watson opened up about his incredible cricket career in the Indian Premier League (IPL). Regarded as one of the finest Australian all-rounders in the modern era of the gentlemen's game, Watson plied his trade with 2008 champions Rajasthan Royals, Virat Kohli's Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB), and MS Dhoni-led Chennai Super Kings (CSK) in domestic cricket's biggest extravaganza. Watson had announced his retirement from all forms of cricket following CSK's elimination from the IPL 2020. Before his memorable stint with the Dhoni-led side in the IPL, the former Australian all-rounder represented Kohli's RCB for seven seasons in the cash-rich league. Speaking about his tenure with the Kohli-led side, Watson recalled that RCB was a great experience although there was no real emotional connection with the franchise owners. “RCB was a great experience because of the calibre of players I played with. It was run by Diageo which is sort of a Johnny Walker company, so it was more corporately sort of run, which is different. There’s no real emotional connection with the owners who put in their heart and soul into it,” Watson was quoted as saying in a Grade Cricketer podcast. The one-time IPL champion with Rajasthan Royals joined forces with Dhoni's men and the star opener slammed a match-winning century to mark CSK's remarkable return to the cash-rich league in 2018. Watson lauded CSK head coach Fleming's man-management skills and also spoke at length about his incredible experience at the Chepauk. "CSK was an incredible experience – to be with a team that was ageing, because of the experience we had, to be led by MS Dhoni, to be coached by Stephen Fleming, who is the best coach I’ve ever worked with," Watson said. "Fleming’s man-management skills, understanding of individuals and team environment, and also his cricket knowledge is ultimate. And, of course, the connection he had with MS Dhoni. That was a super cool experience," Watson added. Talking about Watson's iconic career in the IPL, the two-time IPL winner played 145 matches and amassed 3874 runs. The Australian pacer also scalped as many as 92 wickets in the cash-rich league. On the international circuit, the 39-year-old scored a total of 10,950 runs and managed to take 291 wickets for Australia.