Justin Langer feels the Indian Premier League's timing this season is to blame for the many injuries that have marred the India vs Australia series. The Australian coach admitted that although he loves the IPL, its delayed start has impacted players from both sides.
The IPL was delayed from its usual March start due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The T20 league ultimately took place in the UAE in September, with the summit clash taking place on November 11. The revised schedule led to players from both sides flying straight to Australia after the final, and a 14-day quarantine meant that they began the series as soon as they were allowed outdoors.
Speaking to the media ahead of the Brisbane Test, Justin Langer suggested that IPL’s timing could be the reason behind the recent spurt of injuries.
“We'll review this, but I can't help think that the IPL this year probably wasn't ideal timing for anyone, certainly for such a big series like this. But the timing of it probably wasn't ideal and I wonder if that's having an impact on the injuries we are seeing for both teams throughout this summer.”
The Border-Gavaskar series has seen players who played the IPL struggle with injuries at various points. David Warner and Marcus Stoinis injured themselves while playing the white-ball series. For India, the situation has been much worse. More than 10 players, including Umesh Yadav, Jasprit Bumrah and Ravindra Jadeja amongst others, suffered injuries during the tour Down Under.
Justin Langer compares IPL to county cricket
The Australian coach found it “interesting” to observe the impact on both teams due to injuries. Justin Langer pointed out that while the hosts struggled with fitness issues during the white-ball series, India's players have done so during the Tests. Despite that, Justin Langer praised the IPL, praising it for fast-tracking the white-ball development of players.
“I love the IPL. I look at the IPL now like I used to look at (English) county cricket for young players, you go and play county cricket and it helps their development enormously. I think it's the same with the IPL with our players, it helps their white-ball development.”
The Border-Gavaskar Trophy is locked in at 1-1, with the final Test scheduled to take place at The Gabba in Brisbane from January 15. With Hanuma Vihari and Jadeja ruled out of the Test, and the likes of Jasprit Bumrah and Ravichandran Ashwin having picked up injuries recently, India have their backs up against the wall as they face a race against time to nail down the playing XI.Published 13 Jan 2021, 10:56 IST