Ben Stokes out for a month as ECB plays down injury concerns

Ben Stokes’ return to the County Championship has been placed on maintain for not less than the remainder of the month, after England’s allrounder underwent a scan on his left knee within the wake of final month’s Take a look at tour of the Caribbean.

Stokes was visibly troubled by the long-standing damage throughout England’s 1-0 collection loss, however however was England’s most-used seamer in the midst of the three Assessments. Regardless of ideas that he can be eased again into motion after battling a facet pressure in Australia, he despatched down 99 overs for his seven wickets, together with 41 within the collection opener in Antigua, his heaviest workload since 2016.

Having opted out of the IPL public sale in a bid to redouble his deal with England’s waning Take a look at fortunes, Stokes’ intention had been to play a number of early-season fixtures for Durham, earlier than the Take a look at collection in opposition to New Zealand will get underway on June 2.

“I feel it was fairly apparent that I used to be battling my knee a bit out within the Caribbean,” Stokes mentioned. “In the intervening time there is no such thing as a coaching. So I’ll go and get the scans after which we will discover out what is going on on, after which hopefully could make a plan from there.”

In a brief assertion on Friday, the ECB confirmed that the scan had taken place, however performed down the long-term significance of the findings.

“Ben had a scan on his left knee which did not reveal something new,” a spokesperson mentioned. “We had deliberate for him to return to LV= Insurance coverage County Championship cricket in early Might and, whereas he’s feeling tender within the knee, that plan stays the identical following the scan. We’ll proceed to handle him along side Durham.”

Assuming there are not any additional issues, Stokes’ return might be earmarked for Durham’s go to to Worcestershire on Might 5, or their house fixture in opposition to Glamorgan the next week. Durham then tackle Middlesex at Lord’s on Might 19, earlier than the beginning of the T20 Blast, and England’s preparation for the New Zealand collection.

England’s Take a look at captain, Joe Root, can be as a consequence of miss the early weeks of the season as he rests up after the stresses of England’s winter campaigns in Australia and West Indies. It’s thought that he could return to motion for Yorkshire on April 28, once they tackle Kent at Headingley.

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