2023 is a crucial year for the Indian team. They have not one, but two big opportunities in hand to end their trophy drought in ICC events. In June, they will be up against Australia in the World Test Championship final and later in October, the country will be hosting the ODI World Cup where the Men in Blue will enter as favourites. But with two trophies in sight, the biggest discussion has also been around workload management with the players now part of the ongoing IPL 2023. India skipper Rohit Sharma and former head coach Ravi Shastri had both raised the issue amid rising injury list, but IPL chairman Arun Dhumal brushed aside all talks with a hard-hitting “Virat Kohli” statement. (RCB vs LSG Live Score IPL 2023)
“It’s all up to the franchises now. Franchises own them. We have given indications, some kind of borderline thing to teams, but at the end of the day, it’s up to the franchise. I doubt that will happen, though,” Rohit had said on the eve of Mumbai Indians’ first game in IPL 2023.
Over the past six months, injuries have plagued Team India – Deepak Chahar and Washington Sundar have been in and out of the side with recurring injuries, Jasprit Bumrah has been sidelined since T20 World Cup and Shreyas Iyer will be missing WTC final with a back injury.
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Last month, in conversation with Sports Yaari, Shastri urged the BCCI to take a stand on workload management and have a discussion on the same with IPL franchises. “You need that much cricket and you need to give certain break. Even if it happens to be IPL. Board has to take the stand there, tell the franchises, ‘listen, we need them. India need them. For India’s sake, if he doesn’t play those games, it will be good,” he had said.
In an interview with Indian Express, Dhumal shrugged all claims, pointing out that players like Kohli, Mohammed Shami and Ravindra Jadeja never got injured playing IPL during their career.
He said: “The problem in our country is that whosoever makes money, be it a company or individual, he is seen with suspicion. Virat Kohli has been playing IPL for so many years, he’s never been injured. Ravindra Jadeja, Mohammed Shami never got injured. Does it have anything to do with the IPL?”
Citing Iyer’s recent injury, he added: “Shreyas Iyer got injured but not because of the IPL. Just because they make money through IPL, we start blaming IPL for anything and everything. Injuries are an integral part of any sport. Our badminton stars are getting injured. They don’t play in the IPL. There are so many stars who are coming from overseas and playing in the IPL.”