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After Sunil Gavaskar, Irfan Pathan slam England players for leaving IPL early, Michael Vaughan blames scheduling, says… | Cricket News

NEW DELHI: Legendary Sunil Gavaskar and all-rounder Irfan Pathan recently came down heavily on England players for leaving the IPL early this season.
With the T20 World Cup fast approaching, skipper Jos Buttler and several other English players went back home to prepare for ICC’s cricketing extravaganza with a five-game series against Pakistan.
While Gavaskar demanded a penalty on the players, Pathan asked them to either be available for a full season or not come at all.
Amid the debate, former England skipper Michael Vaughan stepped in and defended the players, pointing out that the country comes first and that players were not wrong in leaving early.
“If you are going back to represent your country, which England players have done, I think that’s fair enough. They are playing a series against Pakistan. The England players wouldn’t have gone back if it wasn’t for the Pakistan series,” Vaughan said on Cricbuzz.
“The series was on the calendar. With English cricket, the defence of the 50-over World Cup was a poor one by England here in India. So I think, Jos and his team, 5 games against Pakistan, they get together. The actual lead-up to the 50-over World Cup wasn’t perfect either. There were a lot of swaps and changes. They have now gone back to 5 matches, get all the squad together, work on a bit of culture, everyone playing their right roles, I think it will give them a better chance,” he further added.
In this year’s IPL, there were a number of occasions when no double-headers were scheduled on Saturdays.
In the past, IPL has been scheduled in such ways that Saturdays and Sundays squeeze in 4 games. But with not many Saturday doubleheaders, this time around, IPL got a bit stretched.
Vaughan explained that if the season wasn’t stretched, England players wouldn’t have left early.
“Because the schedule is always so late, I think England would have planned for that. I think they would have thought it would have finished today (May 19). Players would have gone back. Players that were playing today’s final would have stayed, those weren’t, wouldn’t have disappeared and England would have played the 5 games (against Pakistan) with a full-strength squad,” Vaughan.
Buttler (Rajasthan Royals), Liam Livingstone (Punjab Kings), Will Jacks, and Reece Topley (Royal Challengers Bengaluru) earlier left the IPL to join the England squad ahead of the T20I series against Pakistan, beginning on May 22.

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