England T20 World Cup Squad Unavailable for IPL Play-Offs

England T20 World Cup Squad Unavailable for IPL Play-Offs

The England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) has announced that members of England's T20 World Cup squad will be unavailable for the Indian Premier League (IPL) play-offs. The decision was made to prioritize the upcoming four-match T20I series against Pakistan, which begins on May 22.

The move will likely affect Jos Buttler (Rajasthan Royals), Phil Salt (Kolkata Knight Riders), and Moeen Ali (Chennai Super Kings). These players were informed of their selection in the provisional World Cup squad on Monday and were told that they would not be available for the IPL knockout stages.

The play-offs for the IPL are scheduled to run from May 21 to May 26, directly clashing with England's Pakistan series. Other England players involved in both the World Cup squad and the IPL include Jonny Bairstow, Sam Curran, Liam Livingstone, Will Jacks, and Reece Topley.

The ECB has requested that the players return to the UK on the weekend of May 18-19, which could rule them out of their respective franchises' final group-stage fixtures. The group stage concludes on May 19, and England is keen for their World Cup squad to have a few days together before their first T20I since December.

England's managing director, Rob Key, explained that the decision was made to ensure that the players have sufficient preparation time for the World Cup. "We've got to the point where actually, we think it's more important that you come back at that group gets together," Key said. "You just want them to get together and spend a bit of time and build up to it."

Key also revealed that Buttler had initiated the decision to return home before the end of the IPL. "I asked him very early on in the piece and said, 'Look, as England captain, you're obviously going to have this series against Pakistan. How do you see it?' And straightaway, he said, 'No, no, I want to come back and start getting ready for the World Cup in that series that's just before it.'"

The ECB's decision has drawn mixed reactions. Some have praised the move, arguing that it is necessary to prioritize the national team's preparations for the World Cup. Others have expressed disappointment, as it means that some of the IPL's most exciting players will be absent from the play-offs.

Tags: #Cricket, #England, #IPL, #T20WorldCup, #PakistanSeries

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