Suryakumar Yadav to miss MI's IPL 2024 opener awaits NCA clearance

IPL 2024

Suryakumar Yadav will miss Mumbai Indians' first game of the season.

Suryakumar Yadav has suffered a temporary setback as the National Cricket Academy (NCA) has not cleared him to participate in the upcoming Indian Premier League (IPL).

A known Twenty20 specialist, Surya underwent a fitness assessment at the NCA in Bengaluru on Tuesday. However, the NCA management is understood to have withheld clearance, preventing him from fulfilling his IPL commitments with the Mumbai Indians for the time being.

The immediate fallout of this decision is that Surya will be unavailable for the opening match, without a doubt. Mumbai Indians' first game is scheduled against the Gujarat Titans on March 24 in Ahmedabad.

The enormity of this setback for Surya, who captained India in a Twenty20 series in South Africa in December before undergoing ankle surgery, can be understood from his social media post on Tuesday, where he shared a heartbreak emoji expressing his disappointment.

Further updates on his availability will be contingent upon his clearance in the upcoming fitness test, scheduled for March 21. There is optimism within the Mumbai Indians camp that he may join the squad sooner rather than later. MI's second game - against Sunrisers Hyderabad in Hyderabad - is three days after the first, and there is a belief that he could be available for that match.

While addressing the media on Monday, Mumbai Indians coach Mark Bouhcer hinted that Surya could miss a few games. "We are awaiting updates on Suryakumar from the BCCI. We have always been under a cloud of fitness issues but we have a world-class medical team. We may lose one or two in terms of fitness but we have to move on," Boucher said.

He went on to add, "As the coach of Mumbai Indians, I am going to be a little bit biased and hope to see my best players in all the games. I have a soft spot for my players and I do understand that they might have niggles and that's when I will fall back on my medical team and work with them accordingly."

Closed practice games

Meanwhile, the MI management has issued a statement saying that the practice games this year will be behind closed doors at the Wankhede as always.