IPL 2021 – Mustafizur Rahman Rajasthan Royals: Jofra Archer’s absence due to an elbow injury has already weakened Rajasthan Royals (RR) and now the franchise is waiting for an update on Bangladesh pacer Mustafizur Rahman ahead of the IPL 2021 campaign. Rahman, currently on Bangladesh duty in the ODI series in New Zealand, will certainly not be available for the first match on April 12, making things more difficult for RR.
Picked up for Rs 1 crore from the IPL 2021 auction, Mustafizur Rahman was supposed to play the role of the second pacer for Rajasthan Royals. But last month, he hinted that his first priority would be playing for Bangladesh. With the BCB scheduling two Test matches against Sri Lanka at the time of IPL 2021 (April 17 to May 3), Rahman can miss the entire IPL edition this year.
While BCB said it would allow NOCs to both Shakib and Mustafizur, the former made his position clear. The former World No 1 all-rounder said he would be playing in the IPL 2021. After some back and forth, on Friday, Shakib was cleared to play for KKR on the condition that he would rejoin the Bangladesh squad on May 19.
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But Mustafizur’s stand and his availability for RR stands in doubts.
IPL 2021: Will Mustafizur Rahman be available for Rajasthan Royals in IPL 2021?
Bangladesh is currently on tour to New Zealand for three-match ODI and three-match T20Is. Mustafizur is currently playing the ODI series for Bangladesh. The RR pacer has played all three ODIs in New Zealand and is likely to also stay back for the T20 Series as well.
This means the latest he can join RR will be by April 5th, ensuring he misses the first match against Punjab Kings on April 12 as he will need to serve 7-day quarantine once he reaches Mumbai.
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Sri Lanka vs Bangladesh schedule:
Practice match: April 17-18
1st Test: April 21-25
2nd Test: April 29- May 3
ODI series: May 20 onwards
However, with Bangladesh touring Sri Lanka in mid-April, it is unlikely that Mustafizur will take the trouble of joining RR and then again leave for national duty. But it’s the lack of updates from the player that makes it even more concerning for RR. If the left-arm pacer pulls out owing to national commitments, RR would be able to sign a replacement. Furthermore, Mustafizur’s poor form will also be concerning RR.
In the three ODIs against NZ, his records have been abysmal with just three wickets at an average of 58.33 and an economy rate of 7.77. Against West Indies in the ODIs, however, he impressed with three wickets in 20 overs with an economy of 2.95.
Mustafizur Rahman against NZ in ODI series
1st ODI vs NZ: 0/26 in 4 ovs
2nd ODI vs NZ: 2/62 in 8.3 ovs
3rd ODI vs NZ: 1/87 in 10 ovs
With Jofra Archer doubtful for the entire IPL 2021 season, it should come as a double blow for Rajasthan Royals.