Brisbane Heat has been dealt with a hefty blow ahead of the 2020 edition of the Big Bash League [BBL] as swashbuckling England opener Tom Banton has pulled out of the 10th season due to bubble fatigue.
Banton, who made his BBL debut last year, has been in a controlled cricket environment for some time now. He was a part of the bio-secure bubble during the home summer where he featured in nine International fixtures against Ireland, Pakistan, and Australia.
The Somerset swashbuckler then moved from one bio-bubble in the UK to another one in the United Arab Emirates for his maiden Indian Premier League stint with the Kolkata Knight Riders. Post the IPL, Banton moved straight to South Africa where he is currently a part of the England squad for the white-ball fixtures.
In an interaction with cricket.com.au, Tom Banton conceded that bubble life has been much harder than he had imagined and he went on to thank the Brisbane Heat management for understanding his decision of returning home.
“It has been harder than I thought, spending so much time in the hubs and bubbles, and I came to the realisation that it wasn’t doing me much good,” Banton said.
“I know the Heat looked after me really well during the BBL last year and I was confident that they would understand when I spoke to Boof (coach Darren Lehmann) and Lynny (captain Chris Lynn) about going home to regroup,” he added.
The swashbuckler also added that he will miss playing amid passionate fans at the Gabba.
“I’d like to thank the fans and members who are getting ready to support the Heat during the tournament and pass on my regrets to them that I won’t be there. I will miss playing in front of the crowds at the Gabba and the Gold Coast who were so passionate about the Heat and hope that I can repeat that experience again in the future.” Banton added.
Banton is, however, set to return next season as he had signed a two-year contract following his debut stint last year.