Recently, England’s Test Captain Ben Stokes opted out of IPL 2024. The CSK all-rounder made this decision to handle his workload and fitness.
Earlier, Stokes joined the CSK family with a huge amount of INR 16.25 crores(approx) after the IPL 2023 auction. The most expensive player for CSK entered the IPL 2023 auction with a price of INR 2 crores. However, the English all-rounder outperformed pacer Deepak Chahar to become the most expensive player in the history of the Indian Premier League IPL.
Ben Stokes was only able to play the first two matches for CSK due to a knee injury. He could score a total of only 15 runs in those 2 matches.
Stokes was a part of England’s horrible World Cup campaign in the year 2023. Out of 9 league matches, Ben Stokes scored 304 runs in 6 innings. It includes his best performance against the three following teams:
- Australia: 64 runs from 90 balls
- Netherlands: 108 runs from 84 balls
- Pakistan: 84 runs from 76 balls
Stokes had to miss the first three matches of the World Cup 2023 due to a hip niggle. England’s test skipper reversed his decision to retire ahead of the ICC World Cup 2023 tournament.
As Ben Stokes opted out of IPL 2024, he shared his opinion during the announcement on 23rd November 2023 (Friday).
The all-rounder shared that he is excited about the upcoming 5-match Test series against India and the ICC T20 World Cup in 2024. Stokes wanted to deliver his best performance in the upcoming series and tournaments.
Also, Ben Stokes wanted to work on his workload and physical fitness.
Apart from his workload and his dedication to his team, there were other essential reasons why Ben Stokes opted out of IPL 2024:
Ben Stokes underwent knee surgery in November 2023, after completing the league match against Pakistan in the CWC 2023 tournament. The surgery was to address the incessant injury on his left knee.
At present, Stokes is under observation after the completion of his surgery successfully.
The 32-year-old cricketer seeks to regain his physical fitness within a few months to play the test series against Team India.
Though it may take several months, Ben Stokes’s determination to recover within a few months shows the intent to play for his country.
Ben Stokes opted out of IPL 2024 to prevent further injuries. The busy IPL schedule could risk the repetition chances of being injured. As the IPL 2024 is scheduled for more than 2 months, the chances of injury could put his position at risk for the upcoming T20 World Cup.
Ben Stokes wants to improve his techniques according to different formats of the game. The upcoming test series and T20 World Cup require a different approach towards the game.
This strategy of a 2-month break allows Ben Stokes to plan a long-term career as well as remain a valuable player for both England and CSK.
Ben Stokes needs to have a perfect balance with his explosive batting techniques. Moreover, to implement different strategies, a cricketer needs to have great mental strength.
Since Ben Stokes opted out of IPL 2024, he would get a sufficient break to come out of the extreme pressure and strain in batting techniques, which he could have experienced with his participation in IPL 2024.
It is important for any cricketer to balance their physical fitness as well as their emotional strength.
The busy schedule for Ben Stokes across three different formats of the game could have a severe impact on his physical fitness.
Ben Stokes opted out of IPL 2024, to focus on his long-term endurance allowing the 32-year-all-rounder to focus on upcoming series and tournaments.
Possibly, Ben Stokes plans to play the forthcoming editions of IPL by omitting the 17th edition of this tournament.
Ben Stokes opted out of IPL 2024: CSK’s reaction after the unavailability of the English-all-rounder
Recently, a member of CSK’s management reacted in an affirmative manner after Ben Stokes opted out of IPL 2024. According to this reaction, the CSK supports Ben Stokes’s commitment to his national duty.
Furthermore, CSK thanked Ben Stokes’s contribution to the franchise and wished him for his future goals and achievements.
Overall, the CSK management is aware of Ben Stokes’s knee injury and encourages him to focus on his long-term physical fitness.
It would definitely be a big blow for Chennai Super Kings as Ben Stokes opted out of IPL 2024. The star all-rounder adds firepower to the CSK batting line-up. Also, Stokes can prove to be an additional backup for CSK’s bowling line-up.
Interestingly, Ben Stokes as a game-changer with both bat and ball could have been a boosted advantage for CSK.
However, the franchise has a strong squad and has won the previous year’s IPL title in the absence of Ben Stokes. The team led by MS Dhoni’s brilliance won the 5th IPL title without any involvement of Ben Stokes.
Additionally, the CSK management will be targeting a better replacement for Ben Stokes.
Since, Ben Stokes opted out of IPL 2024, both challenges and opportunities are paved for CSK in the upcoming tournament.