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IPL 2021: Ready to lead KKR for remaining season, says former captain Dinesh Karthik

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Former Kolkata Knight Riders captain Dinesh Karthik said he is ready to lead the team when IPL 2021 restarts in the UAE and also confirmed the non-availability of Pat Cummins for the second half of the season.

KKR were languishing in 7th spot in IPL 2021 when the tournament was suspended indefinitely due to Covid (Courtesy of BCCI)

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HIGHLIGHTS

  • Some foreign players are a bit apprehensive about returning to play the rest of IPL 2021
  • Pat Cummins reached home from IPL 2021 on May 31, after quarantining in India and Maldives
  • Remaining 31 matches of IPL 2021 will be played in UAE due to the ongoing Covid crisis in India

Kolkata Knight Riders wicketkeeper Dinesh Karthik revealed on Friday that fast bowler Pat Cummins will not come back to play the remaining matches of the Indian Premier League (IPL) 2021 in the United Arab Emirates.

IPL 2021 was suspended on May 4, after just 29 matches, after coronavirus breached the tournament’s bio-bubble, infecting four players, 2 support staff members and a bus cleaner.

The remaining 31 matches of the 8-team tournament will be played in the UAE due to the second wave of Covid-19 in India. The country will be hosting IPL matches for the second year in succession, and third time overall after 2009 and 2020.

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UAE had successfully hosted the entire IPL season last year in a secure bio-bubble environment without any major hiccups during the tournament which is why the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) decided to take IPL 2021 to the Emirates once again.

But some foreign players are a bit apprehensive about leaving their families to come back and play the second phase of the tournament amid the pandemic.

Pat Cummins, who was one of the 38 Australian players stuck in India and then in Maldives due to the Covid-related travel and quarantine restrictions, is one those cricketers who doesn’t want to take part in the remainder of IPL 2021.

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Karthik confirmed that the Aussie superstar won’t return to the team and also offered to lead the two-time champions one again if captain Eoin Morgan is also not available when the tournament restarts.

“Pat Cummins has himself said that he will not come. But when it comes to Eoin Morgan, there are still three months to go. A lot can change from now till September. But if I am asked to lead, I will be ready for it,” said Karthik in an interview with The Times of India.

KKR were languishing in 7th place with just 2 wins from 7 games before the BCCI indefinitely suspended IPL 2021 due to the virus crisis.

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Cummins, who picked 9 wickets in IPL 2021, was the first player from the tournament to donate money towards India’s fight against Covid-19 after which a host of cricketers and commentators made contributions towards the country’s medical infrastructure and virus-relief work.

Cummins, who picked 9 wickets in IPL 2021, was the first player from the tournament to donate money towards India’s fight against Covid-19 after which a host of cricketers and commentators made contributions towards the country’s medical infrastructure and virus-relief work.

Click here for IndiaToday.in’s complete coverage of the coronavirus pandemic.

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