South African batsman Rassie van der Dussen will not be joining the Rajasthan Royals for the 2021 Indian Premier League. Earlier, the right-handed batsman was reported to have been roped in as a replacement of English all-rounder Ben Stokes. Stokes was ruled out of the Indian Premier League due to a finger injury. Ben Stokes only featured in RR's opening game against Punjab Kings (PBKS), where he sustained the injury. After that, the all-rounder had to return back to England in order to recover from his injury. The Royals also lost their ace pacer Jofra Archer due to a hand injury and Liam Livingstone due to bubble fatigue. The omissions have significantly troubled RR, who are struggling in the second half of the points table.
Five players have pulled out of the IPL
Jofra Archer was the Most Valuable Player (MVP) in IPL 2020 despite the team finishing at the bottom of the table. The Barbadian born has been suffering from an elbow issue for quite a long time. In March, Jofra Archer had headed back home just before the ODI series against India due to an elbow injury. The 25-year-old featured in two Tests and all five T20Is in India. However, he was ruled out of the ODI series because of a problem with his right elbow, which deteriorated during the two-month tour. The all-rounder underwent a successful finger surgery to remove a piece of glass that was stuck in his finger.
Jofra Archer is the third cricketer from England who has been ruled out of the entire tournament. Star all-rounder Ben Stokes also injured his finger in RR's opening game against Punjab Kings. Ben has already returned home. Apart from him, batsman Liam Livingstone has also headed back home, citing bio-bubble fatigue. He did not feature in any game for Rajasthan Royals. Multiple sources have indicated that RR is planning to rope in South Africa's Rassie van der Dussen as a replacement player.
England Cricket Board would also be concerned over their players' fitness, considering they have a packed nine-month schedule to follow. After playing against New Zealand, England is going to host five Tests against India. The England cricket team will then proceed for the T20 World Cup and the Ashes. Ben Stokes and Jofra Archer are very crucial for England in all the formats of the game. Thus, their injury will come as a massive blow to the reigning 50-over world champions.