Just ahead of the start of the 14th edition of the Indian Premier League (IPL), three-time Indian Premier League champion Chennai Super Kings have got a huge blow as their in-form bowler Josh Hazlewood has opted out of the league. The Australian bowler said that he has decided to keep his focus on the upcoming Ashes series and also the upcoming T20 World Cup which will be played in October-November in India, and also shared his desire to spend time with his family as well.
“It’s been a long 10 months in bubbles and quarantine at different times, so I decided to have a rest from cricket and spend some time at home and in Australia in the next two months,” Josh Hazlewood said to cricket.com.au. “We’ve got a big winter ahead too. The West Indies is going to be a long tour, with Bangladesh (T20 tour) potentially thrown on the end of that.”
“Then potentially the T20 World Cup leading into the Ashes, so it’s a big 12 months, as it always is with Australia, and I want to give myself the best chance to be mentally and physically ready for that. That’s the decision I’ve made, and it sits pretty well with me,” Hazlewood again added.
With this, Josh Hazlewood became the third Australian player after Josh Philippe and Mitchell Marsh to have pulled out the name from the cash-rich league. Also, this might be a chance for him to get back in his swashbuckling form for the domestic competitions as well.
“I haven’t been bowling a great deal with plans to play T20 cricket until after this game and also the weather wrecked my chances – I probably missed five sessions outdoors,” Josh Hazlewood further added. “The workloads are a bit too low … to play (both) Wollongong and the Shield final if we make it – hopefully I can use the next two weeks to build up and if we’re in the Shield final I can play that.”
Meanwhile, Chennai Super Kings had a forgettable season in the 2020 IPL in the UAE where they ended at the seventh position as well as missed the playoff berth too for the very first time in the history of the league as well. However, they will try to bounce back this season which is slated to begin April 9 with the defending champions Mumbai Indians taking on Royal Challengers Bangalore in Chennai. Chennai Super Kings will begin their campaign against Delhi Capitals on April 10 in Mumbai.
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