'I think that's fair enough' - Michael Vaughan defends English players who left IPL 2024 for national team duties

"The England players wouldn't have gone back if it wasn't for the Pakistan series," said Vaughan.

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Michael Vaughan
Michael Vaughan. (Photo Source: Mike Egerton/PA Images via Getty Images)

Many England players left the Indian Premier League 2024 mid-way, owing to their national duties. England are playing a T20I series against Pakistan in order to prep up for the impending T20 World Cup 2024 in June. The likes of Jos Buttler, Phil Salt, Will Jacks, and Reece Topley have left for their country as their respective IPL teams brace themselves for all-important playoffs. Former Indian cricketers such as Sunil Gavaskar and Irfan Pathan criticised the move from English players.

Now, former England captain Michael Vaughan has backed his countrymen amidst intense scrutiny. He advocated prioritising the national duties over the domestic league. He also stressed that, for the opposition like Pakistan, it is fitting that the players overlooked IPL 2024. For the unversed, teams such as Royal Challengers Bengaluru, Rajasthan Royals, and Kolkata Knight Riders will miss their key English players in the crucial stage of the tournament.

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"If you are going back to represent your country, which England players have done, I think that's fair enough. They are playing a series against Pakistan. The England players wouldn't have gone back if it wasn't for the Pakistan series. The series was on the calendar. With English cricket, the defence of the 50-over World Cup was a poor one by England here in India,” said Vaughan as quoted by India Today.

“So I think, Jos and his team, 5 games against Pakistan, they get together. The actual lead-up to the 50-over World Cup wasn't perfect either. There were a lot of swaps and changes. They have now gone back to 5 matches, get all the squad together, work on a bit of culture, everyone playing their right roles, I think it will give them a better chance," he added.

IPL 2024 decks up for the playoffs

IPL 2024 is done with the league stages and the tournament has its top four teams sorted. Kolkata Knight Riders will take on Sunrisers Hyderabad in Qualifier 1 on Tuesday, May 21 at the Narendra Modi Stadium in Ahmedabad. Whereas, Royal Challengers Bengaluru will take on Rajasthan Royals in the Eliminator on Wednesday, May 22 at the same venue.


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