England opener Jason Roy will not be a part of the Delhi Capitals franchise at the upcoming season of Indian Premier League “due to personal reasons”, the franchise confirmed on Thursday.
Uncapped Australian left-arm seamer Daniel Sams, the top wicket-taker in last year’s Big Bash League, will replace Roy in the squad for IPL which starts on September 19 in the UAE.
Earlier in the day, Roy had pulled out of the upcoming three match T20I series against Pakistan due to a side strain but captain Eoin Morgan had said he expected the batsman to be fit for Australia series.
Roy is the second Englishman who has been ruled out for DC for the upcoming season, as South Africa’s Anrich Nortje was named as a replacement for Chirs Woakes.
Meanwhile, Sams’ inclusion gives a new dimension to the DC attack as a left-arm seamer.
On joining Delhi Capitals, Sams said, “The IPL is a huge platform for any cricketer, and back home, we all follow the tournament extremely closely every year. I feel fortunate to be a part of it this year, and I’m thankful to the Delhi Capitals management for giving me this opportunity. I can’t wait to join the rest of the players in the UAE.”
He will be joining fellow Australians Marcus Stoinis and Alex Carey at the Delhi Capitals.
Sams has been a consistent performer in the BBL and topped the charts last edition when he picked up 30 wickets in 17 games for the Sydney Thunders. He is reputed for his variations and can wield a long handle lower down the order.
Earlier, Roy England team management announced that Roy will remain with the squad and commence his rehabilitation programme with a view to featuring in next month’s white-ball series against Australia.
The Surrey top-order batsman suffered the injury this week in the team’s preparation at Emirates Old Trafford, the venue for the series opener on Friday.
England white-ball captain Eoin Morgan, speaking to reporters later Thursday, said: “Unfortunately he tweaked his side two days ago now and will be ruled out for the three games in order to give him time to prepare for both series against Australia.
“At the moment we don’t anticipate it being anything serious but we want to give him every chance to be fit for Australia, both series, the T20s and 50-over,” Morgan added.
“We will see how he progresses over the next three or four days and be able to report back then.”
World Cup winner Roy’s absence could create an opening for Yorkshire’s Dawid Malan or Somerset’s Tom Banton, with none of England’s leading multi-format players who appeared in the recent 1-0 Test series win over Pakistan selected for the T20s as officials maintain two separate squad ‘bubbles’ amid the coronavirus.
Morgan, however, was coy about the composition of a revamped top three, saying: “We have (decided) but we won’t be disclosing it until tomorrow at the toss.”
‘Next man in’
Malan, a team-mate of Morgan’s at Middlesex before joining Yorkshire ahead of this season, has a superb T20 international average of over 52, with one hundred and five fifties from just 10 matches at this level.
“Every time he is available, he has put himself forward as the next man in simply by weight of runs and the rate at which he has scored them,” said Morgan of Malan.
Asked about rising star Banton’s prospects, Morgan added: “Naturally he is a top-order batter but in a time where we have top-order batters in abundance and actually lack middle-order players, it is sometimes difficult to get him in in the position that is his strength.”
Morgan said England had no plans to call up a reserve player as cover for Roy given that, with all-rounders Joe Denly and Moeen Ali already in the squad, “we have all bases covered”.
(With PTI and AFP inputs)