Mitchell Starc opts out of the IPL

Australian fast bowler Mitchell Starc has decided not to take part in the upcoming IPL to give himself some rest before the hectic season for Australia.

Mitchell Starc and Royal Challengers Bangalore have mutually agreed to discontinue their association.   -  PTI

Australian fast bowler Mitchell Starc and Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) parted ways on Sunday, the eve of the Indian Premier League (IPL) auction. The 27-year-old cited a need to manage his workload in the lead-up to the ICC Champions Trophy, and pulled out of this season of the IPL.

“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, to have a break, spend time with my family and take the opportunity to work on getting back to full fitness," Starc was quoted as saying by Cricket Australia. "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."

Starc would instead undertake a period of rehabilitation and strength training ahead of the Champions Trophy, stated Cricket Australia Executive General Manager Pat Howard. "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 said.

"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. 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.”

A press release from the BCCI said Starc and RCB had "mutually decided to discontinue their association". As a result, Rs. 5 crore was added to RCB's purse, with the franchise now allowed to buy another overseas player.

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