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IPL in UAE: Sunrisers Hyderabad's Kane Williamson focused on delivering on big stage

IPL in UAE: Sunrisers Hyderabad's Kane Williamson focused on delivering on big stage

Dubai: Former captain Kane Williamson is focused on delivering on the big stage when his Sunrisers Hyderabad commence their campaign in the 13th Indian Premier League (IPL) later this month.

Content at merely getting the opportunity of pursuing his career as a professional cricketer, Williamson — who was among the last players to join up with his squad last Thursday — the Kiwi batsman insisted that it is great to see the competition going ahead.

Williamson, who was replaced by Australian David Warner as captain this season, landed in the UAE last Thursday and is currently confined serving out his six-day quarantine period in his hotel room at the luxurious Anantara The Palm Dubai. During this time frame, Williamson will need to return all of his three tests negative after which he will be able to join his teammates in training ahead of the tournament starting on September 19.

“It is great that IPL is going ahead and all the players can get over to Dubai and quarantine and then start looking forward to playing some cricket. I know for everybody out there, it’s been a long time between any sort of normality so it is a very exciting opportunity,” Williamson said in a video posted on the Sunrisers Hyderabad YouTube channel.

When asked what he will be doing during his quarantine period in Dubai, Williamson said: “I’m sure it will be a longish six days, but it will be fine at the same time. I am looking forward to catching up with all the guys. I will make sure I get through some fitness and exercise and do a bit of reading. Let’s see where the quarantine takes me, I will start acclimatising, I suppose.”

As per local protocol laid down, all players and team personnel are required to undergo a six-day quarantine period after landing in the UAE and everyone needs to be tested for COVID-19 three times. Only after they return negative tests on all three occasions are they allowed to start training with their teammates.

For long, Williamson — who turned 30 last month — has been the mainstay with the Sunrisers. He was signed for $96,500 by the family-owned business side in February 2015. He played for Sunrisers in the 2016 season as they went on to win the title.

New Zealand’s current captain has close cricket-related ties with India with his debuts in Tests and ODIs coming up against the cricketing powerhouse way back in 2010. Incidentally, Williamson played his last bit of cricket also against India in February before the world shut down due to the coronavirus pandemic.