IPL 2021: BCCI to franchises, rest T20 World Cup-bound players – As the T20 World Cup is just a month away, the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) has requested franchises to rest key players in the IPL 2021 for the sake of mega ICC event. Rohit Sharma or Hardik Pandya missing out of Mumbai Indians’ important match against Chennai Super Kings was no coincidence. InsideSport has learnt that it was BCCI’s request to Mumbai Indians and other franchises to “look after” the T20 WC bound players that kept the duo out.
“Rohit Sharma is a key player in the World Cup and we don’t want to take any risk. Mumbai Indians did the right thing by resting him for the first match. He still has a bruise on his knee. We have advised both Rohit and Mumbai Indians to consider the World Cup as a priority and take adequate rest,” a senior BCCI official told InsideSport.
IPL 2021: BCCI shoots letter to franchises, requests ‘to manage workload of T20 World Cup-bound players, rest for few matches’
IPL 2021 Phase 2: While Mumbai Indians said it was a team management’s decision, it was much more than that. Mumbai Indians have 6 players who are in India’s 15-member World Cup squad and amongst them, five will surely feature in India’s Playing XI. As both Rohit Sharma and Jasprit Bumrah have played all the four Test matches in England, the two are under the scanner on the fitness front.
IPL 2021 Phase 2: Mumbai Indians players in T20 World Cup squad:
- Rohit Sharma
- Jasprit Bumrah
- Suryakumar Yadav
- Ishan Kishan
- Hardik Pandya
- Rahul Chahar
Jasprit Bumrah has bowled 151 overs in England, the highest amongst Indian bowlers and third highest in the series. He has also batted for 25 overs in the series. As the Indian pacer has a troubled history of injuries, BCCI has advised Mumbai Indians and Bumrah to take it easy in the IPL and not risk any injuries. In the 6 matches left in the tournament, Bumrah could be rested in some to manage his workload.
“Bumrah has done well in terms of fitness. But obviously, he is a key player in not just World Cup but also the Test against New Zealand. He is eager to play all the matches in IPL but managing his workload will be crucial. We have advised Mumbai to consider that. But it is up to them to take a call. BCCI cannot force a franchise to rest a player if he is not carrying any injury,” the BCCI official said.
IPL 2021 Phase 2: BCCI’s plans for T20 World Cup:
- BCCI requests franchises to prioritise T20 World Cup in IPL team selection.
- Don’t risk injuries. Rohit Sharma, Hardik Pandya and Jaspirt Bumrah on top of BCCI’s priority list.
- The Mumbai Indians trio could miss out on few matches in IPL 2021 Phase 2.
- BCCI is concerned about Virat Kohli’s form but as it is his last T20 tournament as the captain, the Indian board has left it up to him to take rest or get his form back.
IPL 2021 Phase 2: Eventually, all the World Cup-bound players including Virat Kohli will miss few matches here and there as their workload needs to be managed. It’s not just Mumbai Indians, the instruction is clear to all franchises. Even though Mumbai Indians didn’t admit it was BCCI’s instruction, T20 World Cup will take precedence while considering the selection of Playing XI in IPL 2021.
“We (the franchise) keep India first. He’s keeping India first. The World Cup is scheduled after the IPL. Every single aspect of his workload will be managed from a precautionary POV keeping his Team India objectives in mind,” a source in Mumbai Indians told TOI.
“Virat’s fitness isn’t of any concern. He is one of the fittest players in the squad if the not fittest. He knows what needs to be done. As for his form, he knows it more than anyone else. If playing more matches gets him back in the form, we won’t have any problem. It is completely up to him,” another BCCI official told InsideSport.
IPL 2021 Phase 2: But the situation regarding Hardik Pandya is unclear. While neither Mumbai Indians nor the BCCI revealed the extent of the injury, the Indian board is concerned and doesn’t want to risk losing him for T20 World Cup as there is no backup for the all-rounder and Shardul Thakur isn’t ready to take up the challenge completely.
As the IPL 2021 Phase 2 progresses, he might be rested. On Thursday, Mumbai Indians will face Kolkata Knight Riders and don’t be surprised if either Rohit Sharma or Hardik Pandya misses out once again. It’s all part of the plan.