Former Australian cricket captain Michael Clarke has criticised Josh Hazlewood for playing in the IPL 2023 tournament, stating that he should focus on preparing for the World Test Championship final and the Ashes. Hazlewood sustained an Achilles injury in January and has since been recovering from the complaint. He recently returned to play for Royal Challengers Bangalore in the IPL, bowling three overs and returning with impressive figures of 2/15. While national selectors were pleased with Hazlewood’s use of the IPL to build up his bowling loads, Clarke believes that the pacer should be in Australia and concentrate on red-ball cricket.
Clarke further stressed that a significant amount of money associated with the IPL would make it difficult for players to refuse the chance to participate in the tournament. Nevertheless, he was unsure whether Cricket Australia should have intervened and prevented Hazlewood from participating in the T20 tournament. “Unless Cricket Australia are going to say, ‘OK the IPL has just offered you $3 million for eight weeks… we’ll pay you that $3 million you stay home and train with us,’ there’s nothing they can do,” he added.