Captain Aaron Finch, David Warner, and Steve Smith are among 12 Australian players who will miss the start of the 2020 edition of the Indian Premier League (IPL) in view of the league’s COVID-19 protocols.
The trio are part of the 21-man squad that will tour England for three T20Is and three ODIs before the start of the tournament. The matches will take place between 4 September and 16 September.
However, the team’s senior assistant coach Andrew McDonald has been cleared by Cricket Australia to give the tour a miss. He will join the Rajasthan Royals, of whom he is the head coach.
Apart from Smith, who also plays for the Rajasthan Royals, Warner’s team Sunrisers Hyderabad and Finch’s team Royal Challengers Bangalore will sorely miss their key Australian players.
Other Australian players who will not be seen at the start of the IPL include Pat Cummins of Kolkata Knight Riders, Glenn Maxwell of Kings XI Punjab, Mitchell Marsh of the Sunrisers, Josh Phillipe and Kane Richardson of the Royal Challengers, Alex Carey and Marcus Stoinis of Delhi Capitals, Josh Hazlewood of Chennai Super Kings, and Andrew Tye of the Rajasthan Royals.
Due to the England-Australia series, other England players like Eoin Morgon, Jofra Archer and Ben Stokes will also be unable to join the IPL before 26 September.
Originally scheduled to start on 29 March before being postponed due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the 2020 edition of the IPL will now start on 19 September and will be played in the UAE.
According to the standard operating procedures for IPL, members will be tested once they land in the UAE before they go their hotels. They will then undergo a mandatory seven-day quarantine in their hotel while getting tested three times in the week. If all three tests come negative, the members can join the squad.