England all-rounder Chris Woakes has announced that he won't be playing for Delhi in the Indian T20 League this season because he wants to "get off for a bit of a breather".
Woakes, who is currently in Sri Lanka with England's Test squad, will return to Birmingham after the two Tests. He was signed by Delhi Capitals for ₹1.5 crore after his stints with Kolkata and Bangalore.
"I just feel like I'd been on a bit of a treadmill and I needed to get off for a bit of a breather. From a mental point of view it's about recharging those batteries," Woakes said.
In his early thirties, Woakes wants to continue playing for his country and therefore wants to be careful about his physical health. "I want to play for England as long as possible, that's still the pinnacle for me."
Apart from his longevity with the Three Lions, Woakes has also emphasised on the importance of spending some more time with the family. He added, "The league is great but I've been there and done it. That's not to say I don't want to do it again but at this moment England is the most important thing to me, as well as spending time at home with the family where I can. The schedule has just got busier and busier - the only breaks you really get in international cricket are at IPL time."
The 2019 World Cup winner has featured 33 times for the English Test side and with the West Indies, Australia, Pakistan and Ireland series coming up thick and fast right after the T20 World Cup, it is not surprising that he decided to take some time off. Given that he has not played a single T20I for England since 2015, it is almost certain that IPL will not grant him a spot for the World Cup.
The busy cricketing schedule and the increase in number of international and domestic tournaments is giving the players very little time to recover from the fatigue. Indian players have been playing abroad for a long time and with the IPL kicking off right after the short series against South Africa, it leaves us to think, do they not need to "recharge the batteries" as well?
Feature image courtesy: AFP / Lakruwan Wanniarachchi