New Zealand leg spinner, Ish Sodhi, will return to Rajasthan Royals in a dual role which will see him be a part of the team’s support staff as a Spin Consultant, while also contributing in operations for the upcoming season of the VIVO Indian Premier League (IPL) 2020.

The 27-year-old will be part of the Rajasthan Royals’ coaching staff in order to develop spinners, provide support across the team, while assisting in cricket operations.

As part of his new role with us, Sodhi will be working closely with Rajasthan Royals’ spin bowling coach Sairaj Bahutule and Chief Operating Officer Jake Lush McCrum. Having played for the franchise in two seasons – 2018 and 2019, Sodhi is well-versed with our vision, ambitions and has always played an important role within the team, both on and off the field.

Welcoming Sodhi in his dual role at the franchise, Head of Cricket Zubin Bharucha said, "We are very happy to welcome back Ish to the Royals family in his new role. The induction of Ish in this dual role demonstrates the Royals’ commitment to recognise and reward young talent to develop into masters in their field of work. I congratulate Ish on his new stint and wish every cricket fan across the globe gets behind the team when Rajasthan Royals kicks off its new season this summer."

COO Jake Lush McCrum also welcomed Ish to the team, “We are delighted to have Ish on board as our Spin Consultant and Operations Executive. He is one of the most positive and motivational people I have ever met, has incredible knowledge of spin bowling and already has a really strong relationship with Shreyas and Riyan. While Ish will add a lot of value in the development of the now large spin bowling department, we also want to develop him in an operational role within the franchise. This will be of great support to us, in addition to strengthening Ish\"s overall management skillset.”

Sodhi has played 8 matches with us, picking up 9 wickets at an economy of 6.69. He was released before the IPL 2020 Auction, but has returned in a new capacity. “I am delighted to be taking on this new challenge at Rajasthan Royals with this dual role. Having played for two seasons for the Royals, I have formed a great level of understanding with all the people involved with the franchise, and they have always been very supportive of me. Therefore, I did not have to think twice when this opportunity was offered to me by the Royals’ management. I love this franchise and want to help us win the IPL this year.”

“It is a fascinating opportunity for me, to be involved in the coaching staff at such a young age, while also supporting and learning about the operations of the business. I am looking forward to developing my coaching skills alongside Sairaj and learning from Jake on business operations.” said Sodhi, who has picked up 47 wickets in 40 T20Is for the Kiwis.

Leg spinner, Shreyas Gopal, who has played alongside Sodhi during the last two seasons also welcomed the Kiwi’s appointment. “I am so excited that Ish is joining the Royals\" support staff this year. I love chatting to him in the nets about the strategy for upcoming matches, developing new deliveries and learning from his international experiences. I think him and Sairaj will be a great combination for me and the other spinners this year. Ish has actually already been a great mentor to me and really helps my preparation for matches. He is such a good guy to have in the camp, so I\"m delighted he is coming back,” said Gopal.

Ish is a great character to have around and has a brilliant rapport with everyone within the Royals Family. It would be unfair to not mention his rapping skills that we all love so much at the Royals. We eagerly look forward to see Ish in his new role with us.