Ashley Giles: England tours take priority over rescheduled IPL

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England are due to tour Bangladesh and Pakistan before the Twenty20 World Cup

England expect players to be available for their Twenty20 World Cup build-up if there is a clash with the rescheduled Indian Premier League.

One possible window for the postponed IPL is before the T20 World Cup in October, when England are due to tour Bangladesh and Pakistan.

“If those tours go ahead I’d expect them (players) to be there,” said England managing director Ashley Giles.

“We’re planning on involvement of England players in England matches.”

The IPL was postponed last week amid the coronavirus crisis in India and and a number of positive tests among players.

If it had run to its scheduled final on 30 May, Jos Buttler, Sam Curran and Chris Woakes would have been unavailable for England’s two Tests against New Zealand, the first of which begins on 2 June.

Ben Stokes and Jofra Archer would have been in a similar situation had they not been forced to withdraw from the IPL because of injuries.

“The New Zealand scenario was very different,” said Giles. “Those matches were formalised at the end of January, by which time contracts were signed for players to have full involvement in the IPL.”

England’s home summer is set to finish on 14 September. They are due to play limited-overs matches in Bangladesh before T20s in Pakistan on 14 and 15 October – their first trip to the country in 16 years.

On 16 October they will fly to India for the T20 World Cup, which is immediately followed by the Ashes series in Australia.

“None of us knows what a rearranged IPL looks like at the moment,” said Giles.

“But when we start this summer our programme is incredibly busy. We have a lot of important and high-profile cricket.”

Wicketkeeper Buttler and all-rounders Woakes and Curran are currently serving a 10-day period of hotel quarantine since their return from India, but will be released by the time the England squad for the first Test against New Zealand at Lord’s is named next week.

Giles said the availability of players who have been in quarantine will be managed on a case-by-case basis and, if they are available, England may still look to experiment.

“We’re not going to rush them back into cricket,” he said. “We may choose to look at some new faces against New Zealand.”

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