Australia pacer Josh Hazlewood has decided to pull out of this year’s Indian Premier League (IPL) because of fatigue and the need to spend some time with his family following 10-long months in bubbles. The pacer was on Chennai Super Kings’ books for the season but the three-time champions will now have to look for a replacement as the tournament start date draws near.
“It’s been a long 10 months in bubbles and quarantine at different times, so I decided to have a rest from cricket and spend some time at home and in Australia in the next two months. We’ve got a big winter ahead too. The West Indies is going to be a long tour, with Bangladesh T20 tour potentially thrown on the end of that,” cricket.com.au quoted Hazlewood as saying.
Hazlewood went on to add that along with the mentioned tours, the Aussies will also have to play the World T20 later this year followed by the Ashes and he wants to be at the top of his game for them.
However, Twitterati have been joking that’s not the case and Hazlewood is backing out because of Pujara’s presence in the CSK squad.
A social media user said that he’s too scared of Pujara while another felt that he wouldn’t have got a game anyway and would have just been a net bowler to Pujara.
Too scared of pujara
— benstokes1 (@icc_discord) March 31, 2021
Exactly. We were gonna play with Ngidi and Curran anyway. He was just gonna be practice for Pujara in the nets 😂
— Arun Sreenivasan (@arunayyar28) March 31, 2021
Josh Hazelwood is tired of bowling to Pujara in the nets
— Dharmesh (@Mumbaiikar) March 31, 2021
The story of Hazlewood being irritated at bowling to Pujara is a story that came out during one of R Ashwin’s YouTube videos when India’s fielding coach R Sridhar revealed that he had heard Hazlewood being tired of bowling to Pujara. Talking to Ashwin, Sridhar had said that he heard that Hazlewood was in no mood to watch his videos.
“I received some information from the Australian dressing room where they were analysing Pujara’s batting. Hazlewood apparently threw his cap down and said – Enough of me seeing Pujara again. I have seen enough on the field,” Sridhar told Ashwin.
The pair had some long battles in Australia over the last two series and Pujara continued to grind everyone down most of the time. Pujara had played a total of 928 balls this series — the most by any player.
Pujara also looked in great form in the nets and was seen hammering the balls around ahead of the IPL, which starts on April 9 with a mega clash between Royal Challengers Bangalore and Mumbai Indians in Chennai. CSK play their first game on April 10 against Delhi Capitals at the Wankhede Stadium.