Image courtesy of: ESPNcricinfo
Rajasthan Royals captain Shane Watson has revealed that he and “everyone associated with the team certainly felt betrayed” when Sreesanth, Ankeet Chavan and Ajit Chandila were indicted in a match-fixing scandal during last year’s Indian Premier League (IPL).
The Australian all-rounder also admitted that Rajasthan now have a tainted reputation due to the trio’s actions.
“When those three players came out involved in spot-fixing, I and everyone associated with the team certainly felt betrayed,” Watson told Mid-Day. “We were doing everything we possibly could to give ourselves the best chance of winning games, and to feel like a couple of people in our team were doing things to make winning those games more difficult was something that I had not experienced in my playing days.
“There’s no doubt that this horrendous situation has brought us as a team closer than what we were before. With every bad experience, one learns from such challenging situations and gathers a lot of strength from them, and we certainly did.”
Watson added that he was glad to be rid of the “bad apples” and is solely focussed on leading Rajasthan to IPL glory in the ongoing season.
“There’s obviously a bit more spotlight on us because of the spot-fixing situation last year,” Watson said. “But as a franchise, we feel that a couple of bad apples are gone now, so we are wholly and solely focusing on the people we’ve got around us. We are going to do everything to give ourselves the best chance to perform well on the big stage.
“It’s not on our mind whatsoever to try and get other people to forget what happened. It’s more about us coming together and providing the entertainment that we did even in the Champions League to show people what a quality team we are, and that’s all we care about. In the end, that’s what the owners and management care about too.”