Australian drummer Marnus Labuschagne admitted that being ignored at the IPL auction turned out to be a “blessing in disguise” in light of the increase in COVID-19 cases in India.
The 26-year-old, who found no buyers at the IPL auctions in February, has expressed concern for his compatriots in the ongoing lucrative league in India.
“It certainly seems that (missing the IPL) has been a blessing in disguise,” Labuschagne said, quoted by “PA Media”.
“I would have loved to play in the IPL, it’s a great tournament. But there are always two sides to the coin. If I was in the IPL I would have been absent and winning a Shield is something that doesn’t come up often.
“Second, you are looking at the conditions in India now and it doesn’t look great,” added Labuschagne, who has partnered with Glamorgan County Cricket Club.
India is reeling from the second wave of the pandemic, with cases increasing by more than 3 lakh per day, a crisis made worse by shortages of some essential drugs and oxygen supplies.
The Australian government has suspended all direct passenger flights from India until May 15 due to the spike in COVID-19 cases in India.
IPL League matches will end on May 23, followed by the playoffs (May 25, 28) and playoffs (May 26) and the final (May 30) – all scheduled in Ahmedabad.
Labuschagne also revealed that a majority of Aussie players did not feel unsafe in the IPL bio-bubble, but feared returning to Down Under.
“You obviously feel for them. But I haven’t talked to too many insecure guys.
“It’s more about going back to Australia and what it looks like. I just hope they stay safe and get back to Australia safely when they do, ”he added.
Fear of being left out of their own country prompted players like Andrew Tye, Kane Richardson and Adam Zampa to take a flight home to Australia.
However, Australian referee Paul Reiffel’s attempts to leave have ended in stalemate due to his country’s suspension of air travel to India.