Adding to the worries of the Indian Premier League (IPL) authorities, Australian players may not star in Phase 2 of IPL 2021 in UAE. After many trials and tribulations, IPL is all set to resume in the UAE during the September and October window this year. BCCI confirmed that the 14th edition of the game will resume from September 19. The final of the tournament will take place on October 15.
However, after solving the problem of organizing the remainder of the tournament after it had to called off midway owing to the coronavirus pandemic, BCCI faces a new issue of unavailability of overseas players.
According to reports, Cricket Australia (CA) is planning to conduct a T20I Tri-Series that would include the participation of the West Indies and Afghanistan in the month of October. Meaning if the Tri-series is confirmed and the dates of the series overlap with that of IPL, players from these nations may not feature in the tournament.
Additionally, Australia chairman of selectors Trevor Hohns has also made it clear that the board expects the IPL-bound Australian players to prioritize the T20 tri-series over IPL.
“Around that time of the year, I would certainly hope so (that players forego the IPL for national representation),” Hohns said in a statement.
Although Hohns also added that it depends on the commitment of players. “However, it will certainly depend on their commitments and what we think they should be committing to regarding their Australian commitments at that time.”
He added that the board is yet to address the matter. “We haven’t looked at that yet and we haven’t heard from our players at this stage,” he said.
Earlier, England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) also declared that their players would not be available for the Phase 2 of the IPL. Bangladesh Cricket Board has also refused to grant NOC to their players Shakib Al Hasan and Mustafizur Rahman.
Other countries, including New Zealand and West Indies, are yet to respond on this matter. While West Indies is all set to host the Caribbean Premier League that will host its finale on the same day IPL will resume, New Zealand has its international commitments (Pakistan tour) during the IPL window.
It remains to be seen how the talks with the boards of these countries unfold and whether CA will finalize the Tri-series during the IPL 2021 Phase 2 window.