Kolkata: After Kevin Pietersen, another overseas star pulls out of the Indian Premier League (IPL). Mitchell Starc, the Aussie speedster has decided to discontinue his ties with the Bengaluru franchise- Royal Challengers Bangalore and has opted out of the 10th edition of India’s cash-rich league. Starc, is a part of the Australian Test team which is about to take on India in a four-match test series. As a result of this move Virat Kohli’s team would enter the auctions with an additional purse of Rs 5 crore and would also get a slot for an extra overseas player. The BCCI, in a press release said, “The Royal Challengers Bangalore and fast bowler Mitchell Starc have mutually decided to discontinue their association ahead of the upcoming season of VIVO Indian Premier League 2017 in accordance with Regulation 41 of the IPL Player Regulations.”
The release further added, “The Bangalore franchise will go into tomorrow’s VIVO IPL Player Auction 2017 with an additional purse of INR 5 Crore and an additional slot for an overseas player.” The RCB would thus have a total of Rs 17.825 crore, which is approximately USD 2,660,447 to put to use at the auction. Starc however, said that this move of his would allow him some time for rest in his already hectic schedule.
The speedster said, “At this point in time after a long summer and with a big tour of India still ahead I think it is in my best interests, both physically and mentally, for me to have a break, spend time with my family and take the opportunity to work on getting back to full fitness.” “I have thoroughly enjoyed my time with Bangalore and I certainly hope to be back playing for them in the future and wish them all the best in this year’s IPL,” he added.
Cricket Australia’s General Manager Pat Howard spoke along the same lines and said that the Aussie bowler would benefit from this pullout. In a statement, Howard said,” Mitch has had a very big summer, bowling a high number of balls, and has managed extremely well considering the less than ideal preparation he had leading into the season with his left leg injury.” “He still has a large workload to get through in the next six months with four Tests against India and then the ICC Champions Trophy after the player leave period in May,” he added.
“Following discussions with both Mitch, Royal Challengers Bangalore and our own medical staff it has been agreed that Mitch would benefit considerably from a break in cricket to allow him to fully rehabilitate and strengthen his body ahead of the Champions Trophy” added Howard.
Starc has scalped a total of 34 wickets from 27 matches in the IPL. He was missed by his franchise in the 2016 edition as he couldn’t participate in the tournament owing to a fracture. His side encountered death bowling problems but nonetheless, was able to reach the final courtesy Kohli’s heroics. With him out of this year’s IPL, it would be interesting to see as to who the RCB buys in tomorrow’s auction.
(With inputs from PTI)