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IPL 2021: Glenn Phillips wants to create own legacy at Rajasthan Royals

Following some consistent batting blitz in recent times, the New Zealander was snapped up by Royals as a replacement for wicketkeeper-batsman Jos Buttler, who withdrew from the tournament to spend time with his family.

Although he was announced as a replacement for Buttler, Phillips reckons that he’s “a completely different player” to the Englishman and aims to create a legacy of his own.

“The team has brought me in to do whatever role they need me to play, so it’s not really like I’m filling in Jos’ shoes, I’m probably filling in my own shoes and looking to create a legacy of my own rather than being a replacement,” said Phillips in an official release.

The right-handed batsman, who scored a total of 254 runs in the Caribbean Premier League with Barbados Royals, revealed the reason he picked Rajasthan Royals despite earining interest from more teams.

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“At first, I knew there were other players ahead of me, and then with players dropping out, this opportunity came about. There were a couple of other teams who wanted me, but the fact that I was playing for the Barbados Royals already, made sense for me to go with Rajasthan Royals. I felt it was the right decision to stay with the same franchise,” said Phillips.

The South Africa-born Phillips, who has made it to New Zealand’s T20 World Cup squad, also spoke about the coversations he had with skipper Sanju Samson and team’s Director of Cricket Kumar Sangakkara.

“After I joined, Samson had sent a text welcoming me to the Royals so that was good to see. I had subsequent chats with Sangakkara but that was more of a general catch up because I’ve played with him before at the Jamaica Tallawahs,” added the 24-year-old.

Primarily a wicketkeeper-batsman, Phillips added that he “will be happy to fit in wherever the team needs” him to and is ready to bat anywhere in the line-up.

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“Whether it’s opening, in the middle order, bowling, keeping wickets or wherever in the field, I’ll just do whatever the team needs for me to do.”

The 24-year-old also spoke about what roles he can play as a batsman and what the Royals’ fans can expect from him during the remainder of the IPL 2021.

“I feel like I have the ability to control the pace of the game depending on what the situation is like regardless of the position I’m batting at. So, if you lose wickets, I feel like I have the batsmanship to be able to take the game deep and then accelerate at the end.

“Having power in my game does allow me to take it deep till the end and catch up. I can give the team a fast start as well, but also play the longer innings.”

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When IPL 2021 was suspended earlier this year due to COVID-19 pandemic, Rajasthan Royals were in fifth position and Phillips feels that keeps them well-positioned to qualify for the play-offs.

“From the perspective of our position on the table, being in the fifth spot is a nice little position at the moment because couple of wins from here and we’ll be well on our way to qualifying.”

Rajasthan Royals, who have secured 6 points with three wins from seven matches, will open their IPL 2021 second phase campaign against Punjab Kings at the Dubai International Stadium in Dubai on Tuesday (September 21).

(With Agency inputs)

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