IPL 2021: Pat Cummins to skip UAE leg, Cricket Australia to take call Australian players' participation
The Indian Premier League 2021 is all set to resume for the season remainder in the United Arab Emirates. With the matches likely to be played between September-October, the participation of Australian players look doubtful, with Pat Cummins pulling out.
Barely a month after the much-hyped 2021 Indian Premier League was called off, the Board of Control for Cricket in India announced on Saturday that the tournament remainder would be played in the United Arab Emirates. Although the exact window of the same is yet to be announced, it would likely be played between September-October.
While the announcement is a relief for some participating cricketers and the fans, it did not seem good news for Australian pacer Pat Cummins, who would be skipping the UAE leg for Kolkata Knight Riders. However, the reason for the same remains unknown. "Cummins, despite a multi-million dollar IPL contract, has already said he will not return to the T20 tournament this season," a Sydney Morning Herald report quoted.
Meanwhile, Cricket Australia is pondering on the entire scenario and would be taking a call in the next few days to allow its players to take part in the second leg of IPL 2021. It is being presumed that workload management of the Aussies is an issue.
Furthermore, the tough bio-bubble life ahead of the ICC World T20 2021, likely to be held in India between October and November, is forcing CA to think upon it. Nevertheless, IPL 2021 would be a crucial platform for the players to get suited to the sub-continent conditions ahead of the WT20.
"CA will need to decide whether it's in the best mental health interests of its players to spend even more time in a bio-secure bubble. CA could decide the IPL will ensure players are fine-tuned for the World Cup, which could also be held in the UAE," the report added.
Besides Australia, the availability of English players could also become an issue. England is supposed to have a busy international schedule starting June, while Ashley Giles (Director of Cricket - England and Wales Cricket Board) has already hinted that most of the players look set to miss out.
The BCCI has no other window available to finish off IPL 2021. Furthermore, it is unlikely that the International Cricket Council is looking to rejig the WT20 dates or poke nose into the matters of IPL and the bilateral tours. However, ICC would undoubtedly monitor the situation, including the IPL 2021 in UAE, as the challenging situation in India currently, surrounding the lethal second wave of the COVID-19 pandemic, could force the tournament to be shifted to the gulf as well.
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