The 2017 Indian Premier League (IPL) is just a couple of days away and fans are excited to see their favourite cricketers once again raise the temperature in their T20 avatar. This time around, however, a lot of big names are set to miss the tournament.
From India’s Virat Kohli to West Indies’ Dwayne Bravo, there are players who will either miss full or initial phase of the tournament due to injury. A look at the injured XI ahead of IPL 2017.
Virat Kohli (captain) - RCB
The highest run-getter in 2016 IPL (with 973 runs in 16 games), Virat Kohli will be on the sidelines for the first few matches of the tournament, owing to a shoulder injury he sustained during the Ranchi Test against Australia last month.
It is pertinent to mention that Kohli also missed the fourth and final Test against Australia at Dharamsala, which the hosts won by eight wickets to lift the series 2-1.
The BCCI has confirmed Kohli’s fitness will be assessed in the second week of April. AB de Villiers, who was slated to lead RCB in his absence, has suffered a back injury and it remains to be seen who is appointed as the side’s skipper for the initial matches.
KL Rahul - RCB
With 397 runs in 14 matches at a strike-rate of 146.49, KL Rahul shed the tag of Test specialist during the 2016 IPL. However, this time around, the stylish right-hander has been ruled out due to a shoulder injury he suffered during the Border-Gavaskar series.
Rahul will undergo a shoulder surgery in London in a bid to get fully-fit for the ICC Champions Trophy 2017, which commences June 1.
Quinton de Kock (wk) - DD
The Delhi Daredevils wicketkeeper-batsman will miss the entire 2017 IPL due to a finger injury he sustained during the recently-concluded Test series against New Zealand. De Kock, who finished the three-Test series as South Africa’s second highest run-getter (with 210 runs at 52.50), injured his right index finger during the Wellington Test, but was cleared to feature in the third Test. The southpaw would require four to six weeks to fully recover from the injury.
De Kock has been a key figure in the Delhi outfit since 2014. His absence is surely a big blow to the franchise’s chances this season.
Murali Vijay - KXIP
India and Kings XI Punjab opener Murali Vijay will be out of action for at least sometime due to various injuries.
Vijay injured his shoulder during the fifth Test against England (last year) at Chennai. He played the one-off Test against Bangladesh and the four-Test series against Australia with the injury. The BCCI has advised him to undergo a surgery (on his right wrist and left shoulder) to attain full fitness for the tough Test season ahead, starting with the Sri Lanka series - in July this year.
Martin Guptill - KXIP
The swashbuckling opener, who was bought by Kings XI Punjab in this year’s auction, will miss start of the season to undergo strengthening work on his hamstrings in order to be fit for the Champions Trophy in June.
He’ll stay with the team right from the start but won’t be available for selection. His recovery will be monitored by New Zealand team physio Tommy Simsek, who will travel with him to India.
So far, Guptill has played three IPL matches (all for Mumbai Indians) and has scored 57 runs.
Dwayne Bravo - GL
The Gujarat Lions all-rounder is expected to miss the first leg of the upcoming season because of a hamstring injury.
During the 2016/17 season of Big Bash League (BBL), Bravo – who plays for Melbourne Renegades – suffered the injury during a match against Perth Scorchers. Following that he needed a surgery that ruled him out of remainder of the tournament. He missed the entire Pakistan Super League 2017 as well and is still undergoing the rehabilitation process.
Mitchell Marsh - RPS
The Australian all-rounder sustained a shoulder injury mid-way through the Border-Gavaskar series that will keep him out of action for nine months.
He’ll not only miss the IPL but has also been ruled out of Champions Trophy and will most likely miss the Ashes, that’ll take place later this year.
Last year too, Marsh – who plies his trade for Rising Pune Supergiants – missed most of the action because of a side strain.
Ravindra Jadeja - GL
India and Gujarat Lions all-rounder will miss the opening games of this year’s tournament owing to issues with his spinning finger. The BCCI has advised him two weeks rest.
Jadeja played a key role in India’s prolific run of 10 wins in 13 Tests this home season, finishing with 71 wickets and bowling over 4000 deliveries.
In 2016 IPL, Jadeja scored 191 runs and grabbed eight scalps as his side finished third in their inaugural season.
Ravichandran Ashwin - RPS
Rising Pune Supergiants’ Ravichandran Ashwin will miss the upcoming season of Indian Premier League (IPL) owing to sports hernia.
Ashwin, who complained about the same, following the Test series against Australia, will be out action for six to eight weeks. He first got injured after the Tests against England last year and had to withdraw from Tamil Nadu’s Ranji-Trophy semi-final clash against Karnataka.
During India’s 2016/17 home season, Ashwin bowled 738.2 overs and picked up a record 82 wickets. The duo Ashwin and Jadeja took 153 wickets to become the most successful bowling pair in a season.
Umesh Yadav - KKR
The Kolkata Knight Riders fast-bowler has been ruled out of the opening games of IPL 2017 after he complained of lower back soreness post the completion of Australia series.
Although, he is expected to take part in KKR’s first home game against Kings XI Punjab, scheduled to take place on April 13.
It should to fair to say Umesh Yadav was India’s unsung hero in their brilliant 2016/17 home season. He stepped up to the plate in almost all series and especially in the series against Australia, where he picked 17 wickets in four Tests.
Tim Southee - MI
The Mumbai Indians seamer suffered a grade one tear on his left hamstring during New Zealand’s Test series against South Africa last month.
His availability for the tournament isn’t known as the franchise is yet to take a call on his participation.