Virat Kohli advises BCCI to stop key pacers from IPL appearance

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Skipper Virat Kohli has urged India’s main fast bowlers to skip the next season of lucrative Indian Premier League (IPL) to remain “fresh and fit” for the World Cup.

The Indian Express quoted sources saying that Kohli met with the Supreme Court-appointed Committee of Administrators (COA) and suggested that key pacers like Jasprit Bumrah, Bhuvneshwar Kumar and others in the fray for next year’s World Cup should not be part of the Twenty20 tournament.

No final decision has been taken on this request, according to the report.

The World Cup will be held in England from May 30 to July 14, while the IPL is likely to begin in the first week of April and run till the third week of May.

The suggestion from Team India was that BCCI should compensate the players who would miss the IPL for the world tournament. Others in the set-up have mooted the idea that these pacers can either play the first or second half of the IPL so that they get enough rest.

The discussion over the pacers took place during a meeting convened by CoA members Vinod Rai and Diana Edulji to review India’s poor showing in England and other away tours. It was attended by Kohli, Ajinkya Rahane, Rohit Sharma, coach Ravi Shastri and chairman of selectors M S K Prasad.

The unprecedented request, however, could become a bone of contention between the BCCI and the IPL franchises that signed up these players for significant amounts.