His first-ever season in the IPL will be a season of many firsts as Joe Root prepares with his Rajasthan Royals teammates for the season in the pink city.
Speaking ahead of a practice session on Tuesday, the 32-year-old spoke about his new team: "It's a real family environment. Everyone seems to want to create that feel around things that it's more than just performances on the field. It's been a very warm welcome from the very first call, they said they were delighted to get me in the auction and I'm really looking forward to catching up further down the line."
"I've been here for a couple of days and feel very much a part of things already. I think it's a really nice environment to play cricket and I'm looking forward to it. I am being extremely well looked after and eventually, that helps me excel on the field," he added.
The England cricketer is looking forward to the season. "I'm really excited, it's an experience that you can't replicate anywhere else in the world. I've never experienced it before so it's all going to be very new to me, which, for an experienced player that's played a lot of international cricket, is really exciting.
"I've heard a lot of things. And I'm really looking forward to living it now. It's gonna be a very special year with the fact that the Royals are coming back to Jaipur and connecting with the fans and the city again. We're looking forward to embracing that atmosphere and being a part of it," said the right-hander.
Sharing his thoughts on the Royals' team, Root said; "Last year was an exceptional year for the franchise and I've always enjoyed watching Sanju (Samson) play. I think he's a hell of a talent and seems to keep growing every year as a player and as a leader."
Speaking of a player who he's excited to see play, Root named Riyan Parag.
"He played some important innings last year at a very young age, but I think he is quite mature as a player. I'm looking forward to watching and learning from these guys and seeing how they go about practice and how they think about the game."
"Ashwin is another name I'm really excited about. He's definitely a match-winner, and it's great to get the opportunity to work with these guys up close, watch them go about things, learn from them and hopefully spend some treasured memories with them as well," added Root.
The stylish batter also spoke about his preparations for the format.
"I'm just trying to be as consistent as I can be. You can always work on things slowly and in the background but ultimately you are trying to make sure that your strengths are as good as they possibly can be. And that you know you're switched on and ready for any situation and scenario that you find yourself in and you have that clarity under pressure."
"I'll try and be me as much as I can and try to be unpredictable for bowlers. I am sure I will smile and enjoy it, and will try to get the best out of myself. And hopefully, that will mean that the loyal fans of the Royals will have something to cheer about," he added. (ANI)