England players likely to miss New Zealand Tests for IPL knockouts

England cricketers including Ben Stokes, Jofra Archer and Jos Buttler are likely to miss the New Zealand Test series in June due to a clash with Indian Premier League playoffs 2021.

Stokes, Buttler and Archer are an important part of both IPL franchise Rajasthan Royals and England’s Test squad.

While the schedule of IPL is yet to be announced, the tournament is likely to begin in the second week of April.

Apart from the trio, Chris Woakes (Delhi Capitals), Jonny Bairstow (Sunrisers Hyderabad), and Sam Curran (Chennai Super Kings) could also be affected if their respective teams qualify for play-offs.

The two-match Test series between England and New Zealand is scheduled for the first two weeks of June. However, the players might miss the Test series due to quarantine protocols, if their sides qualify for the playoffs.

According to ESPNcricinfo, the IPL authorities informed the franchises about the availability of the players through an email on Tuesday.

“In the event of ECB Selectors wishing to select a player for the 1st Test v New Zealand whose franchise has made it through to the knockout stages of the Tournament, but who is not featuring in the starting XI, the relevant franchise is requested to release such player early so that they can participate in the Test Match,” ESPNcricinfo quoted the IPL email.

The IPL 2021 Player Auction list was announced last week, with a total of 164 Indian players and a total of 292 cricketers set to go under the hammer in Chennai on February 18.

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