South Africa pace great Dale Steyn has claimed that cricket takes a back seat at the Indian Premier League, insisting that money is given more importance than the game in the lucrative T20 tournament.
Justifying his on-and-off IPL career, Steyn said this was one of the reasons he had not featured regularly in the world’s biggest franchise-based T20 tournament.
“I think when you go to the IPL, there are such big squads and so many big names and so much emphasis on maybe the amount of money players earn and everything like that, so sometimes, somewhere down the line, cricket gets forgotten,” said Steyn, who was part of the Royal Challengers Bangalore squad in the last IPL.
In January this year, Steyn announced that he is opting out of the IPL 2021 but will play other leagues around the world.
Steyn’s decision influenced RCB to release him ahead of the IPL 2021 auction.
Steyn has played 95 IPL matches, picking up 97 wickets with a best of 3 for 8.
But the South African’s repeated injury breakdowns didn’t help his cause as he just featured in 12 IPL matches in the last three seasons.
The South African pacer, who is representing Quetta Gladiators in the Pakistan Super League 6, said he took the break as he needed time off from the game and also because he found playing in other leagues around the world more rewarding as a player.
“When you come to like the PSL or the Sri Lankan Premier League, for that matter, there is an importance on cricket. I have only been here for a couple of days and I have had people in and out of my room, just wanting to know about where I have played and how I went about it,” Steyn said.
“Whereas, when I go to something like the IPL that gets forgotten and the main topic is how much money did you go for in this IPL? That’s just me being brutally honest. I wanted to stay away from that and really put more emphasis on playing and bringing good vibes to good cricket teams and tournaments I feel are worth it,” he added.