Mumbai, Mar 10 IBNS | 9 months ago

Rajasthan Royals on Monday announced Australian cricketer Shane Watson will lead the side in the upcoming season of the Pepsi Indian Premier League 2014.

Watson has been with the Royals since the inaugural season in 2008.

The franchisee said former Indian skipper Rahul Dravid, who retired from all forms of cricket in 2013, will be involved in all aspects of cricket strategy - mentoring the team and guide youth and talent development initiatives for the franchise.

Dravid said he hopes to see the players performing well under Watson's leadership.

Rahul Dravid, the former captain of Rajasthan Royals, told the team's website: "I would like to congratulate Shane Watson on his appointment as the Captain of the Royals. He is not only one of the world's best all-rounders, but a leader par excellence. Watson has been with the team since the first season and is familiar with the players and the staff. The Royals Squad is a bunch of extremely energetic and talented players who know their roles perfectly well and I am sure they will thrive under Watson's inspiring leadership."

Shane Watson, the newly appointed captain, told the website: "I am honoured to lead the Rajasthan Royals, an extraordinary team which has always given me amazing opportunities. Shane Warne and Rahul Dravid had a lot of faith in me while they were captains and gave me opportunities that helped improve my cricket. I hope to live up to the confidence shown in me by the franchise and give our fans an exciting season of cricket. I would like to thank our fans for showing trust in me through their votes on the digital medium. The Royals are one big family and I feel very privileged to be a part of such a special franchise."

"My aim will be to continue playing our best cricket and maintain the winning momentum. We all want to repeat the 2008 IPL success and last season, we were quite close to that. I am confident that we can do it again," Watson said.

Raghu Iyer, CEO, Rajasthan Royals, said: "We are delighted to announce Watson as Captain. He epitomises all the values of the Royals franchise with his true grit and never-say-die attitude. His skills and experience will surely help the team build on the superb performance last season. His presence in the team will also help young players like Sanju Samson, Unmukt Chand, James Faulkner, Steve Smith and Tim Southee." He added, "We'd also like to thank our fans who have supported us unstintingly and came out strongly on the digital medium in favour of Watto as Captain for the upcoming seasons! We are confident all Royals fans will get behind Watson and the team and drive us to perform our best on the field."

(Posted on 10-03-2014)

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