England’s opening batter Alex Hales will not be seen in the upcoming edition of the Indian Premier League (IPL) as he has pulled out of the tournament due to international commitments.

Hales, who recently made his international comeback, smashed an unbeaten half-century, alongside captain Jos Buttler, to help England beat India in the T20 World Cup 2022 semifinal before going on to clinch the title by defeating Pakistan in the summit clash.

The developments regarding Hales skipping the 2023 season of the IPL were confirmed by his franchise Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR), on Tuesday, which was the last day of the retentions.

Hales has joined his national teammate Sam Billings and Australian captain Pat Cummins in opting out of the forthcoming IPL. Undoubtedly, this was a massive loss for the Knight Riders as these three were the crucial members of the squad.

“We respect @patcummins30, @sambillings and @AlexHales1 ‘s decision of skipping next year’s IPL due to personal reasons and national team commitments. All the best, guys! “ tweeted KKR.

Notably, the Knight Riders have made some vital changes ahead of the mini-auction, which is scheduled to take place in Kochi on December 23. They secured the services of Lockie Ferguson and Rahmanullah Gurbaz after trading them from Gujarat Titans (GT).

Another major trade came in the form of India all-rounder Shardul Thakur, whom KKR traded from Delhi Capitals (DC). Apart from this, the two-time champions have also retained as many as 11 players, and will head into the mini-auction with a purse of INR 7.5 crores.

Kolkata Knight Riders’ IPL retention:

Released players: Pat Cummins, Sam Billings, Aman Khan, Shivam Mavi, Mohammad Nabi, Chamika Karunaratne, Aaron Finch, Alex Hales, Abhijeet Tomar, Ajinkya Rahane, Ashok Sharma, Baba Inderjeet, Pratham Singh, Ramesh Kumar, Rashikh Salaam, Sheldon Jackson

Retained players: Shreyas Iyer (captain), Nitish Rana, Rahmanullah Gurbaz, Venkatesh Iyer, Andre Russell, Sunil Narine, Shardul Thakur, Lockie Ferguson, Umesh Yadav, Tim Southee, Harshit Rana, Varun Chakravarthy, Anukul Roy, Rinku Singh.

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