'I just feel like because it's India, we're always being told about the hygiene over here and being extra careful.'
Australia leg-spinner Adam Zampa says he decided to quit the IPL midway as it was the "most vulnerable" bio-bubble he was part of and the tournament should have been held in UAE, like last year.
Zampa and Kane Richardson, who were part of the Royal Challengers Bangalore squad, are set to fly back home later on Tuesday, having pulled out citing personal reasons.
Speaking to the Sydney Morning Herald, Zampa said he felt a lot safer in the UAE, where the IPL was held last year.
"We've been in a few (bubbles) now, and I feel like this is probably the most vulnerable. I just feel like because it's India, we're always being told about the hygiene over here and being extra careful... I just felt like it was the most vulnerable.
"The IPL that was held in Dubai six months ago didn't feel that way at all. I felt like that was extremely safe. Personally, I feel like that would have been a better option originally for this IPL, but, obviously, there's a lot of political stuff that goes into it.
"Obviously there's the T20 World Cup that's meant to be happening here later this year. That's probably going to be the next discussion in the cricket world. Six months is a long time," said the leg-spinner.
Zampa, who did not get a game this season after being bought for Rs 1.5 crore, said a lot of factors contributed to his decision to leave the IPL.
"Obviously the COVID situation over here is pretty dire. I just felt, rocking up to training and stuff, obviously, I wasn't playing in the team as well, I was going to training and I wasn't finding the motivation.
"There were a few other things like bubble fatigue and the chance to get home, once all the news broke about the flights and everything. I thought this was the best time to make the call."
There are contrasting views on whether the IPL should continue amid the raging second COVID wave in India.
On that subject, Zampa said: "There's a lot of people coming out and saying games of cricket could be a reprieve for some people but that's also going to be a personal answer.
"Someone who has a family member on their death bed probably doesn't care about the cricket."
Zampa has no regrets about the financial loss he suffered by withdrawing from the lucrative league.
"I feel like for leaving anyone leaving halfway through a tournament, it's definitely a financial sacrifice. But from my point of view I wanted to put my mental health first."
He also lauded fellow-Australian Pat Cummins, who has donated US $50,000 to help purchase oxygen supplies for India's severely strained hospitals.
"Obviously really generous. I think we'll probably see more of it now. My thoughts go out to everyone over here. I understand how dire the situation is. It's bigger than cricket."