Rajasthan Royals all-rounder Ben Stokes has been ruled out of IPL 2021 after picking up a finger injury in the team’s tournament opener against Punjab Kings on April 12.
Stokes is understood to have broken his index finger on the left hand while taking a tumbling catch to dismiss Chris Gayle off the bowling of Riyan Parag. The development is a significant setback for the Royals, who are hoping to improve on an 8th place finish last season.
They’re already missing the services of Jofra Archer to a hand injury and even though the fast bowler has resumed light training, it is uncertain when he’ll be cleared to resume playing and can join the team bubble in India. Stokes, who also missed out six games of last season’s league phase after he’d travelled to New Zealand to be with his ailing father, will stay with the group in India “to provide his valued support and inputs off the field.”
David Miller and Liam Livingstone are the backup overseas batsmen in the Royals squad. The franchise confirmed that they were reviewing potential candidates to replace the England star. The Royals, who lost their opening encounter to the Punjab Kings, take on the Delhi Capitals on Thursday (April 15) in their next encounter.