South African players join Royal Challengers

Steyn, de Villiers, Morris arrive

AB de Villiers batting for South Africa

The Royal Challengers Bangalore's contingent of South African players have arrived in the United Arab Emirates for the 2020 Indian Premier League.

Fast bowler Dale Steyn, batsman AB de Villiers and all-rounder Chris Morris joined the Royal Challengers squad ahead of the 13th edition of the IPL, which will start on 19 September 2020.

The start of the tournament has been delayed by several months amid the coronavirus pandemic. It has relocated to the UAE, which also hosted the competition in 2014.

What Morris and de Villiers Said

“It's been quite a while since we played the game that we love, so yeah, very tough, very excited to get going, but a little bit nervous too, to be honest,” said Morris.

De Villiers added: “The travelling was a bit different to normal, but we made it here. Got a feel for what we are in for this year, and then I am looking forward to get to know everyone, all the new players, there's a whole new feel in the side, so very excited.”

Where is Kohli?

Indian batsman Virat Kohli will continue to captain the Royal Challengers Bangalore. The franchise have never won the IPL. They have lost three finals – in 2009, 2011 and 2016. They have also finished in third position twice.

Virat has joined the team. He followed quarantine and testing according to RCB standard operating procedures in Mumbai and took a chartered flight directly from Mumbai to Dubai,” a franchise spokesperson told ESPNcricinfo.

Bangalore will also have England all-rounder Moeen Ali, Australian batsman Aaron Finch, Sri Lankan all-rounder and Isuru Udana in their squad.

“Most of the players this time are not travelling with their families. A few of them have decided, it's a personal choice that they have opted for,” concluded RCB chairman Sanjeev Churiwala.

“And if at all their families travel with them – in our current assessment it's a very, very small group – everyone will go through the same bio-bubble procedures and protocols as laid down by the BCCI. Without any exception

The Mumbai Indians are the reigning champions. Mumbai have four IPL titles. The Chennai Super Kings have three. The Kolkata Knight Riders have two.

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Jonhenry is a cricket nut. He has written about the game for several years and knows more about South African cricket - club cricket, in particular - than most. He has been published on most reputable cricket sites and, nowadays, devotes his knowledge of the global game to the iGaming industry. When he is not producing content about cricket, Jonhenry is playing, watching or coaching it. If not that, he's reading about the game or administrating his local cricket club.