Stokes facing lengthy lay-off

Ecb Logo Gutter Icon 135x160

Keep tabs on the England team - click here for all the breaking news from the camp, exclusive interviews, match reports and much more

Ben Stokes

Ben Stokes will be unavailable for England's matches against Pakistan and Sri Lanka this winter. The 20-year-old Durham all-rounder is facing a six-month lay-off after further surgery on his injured right index finger

Durham and England all-rounder Ben Stokes will be sidelined for around six months after undergoing further surgery on his right index finger.

The 20-year-old had an operation in the United States earlier this week to correct a complex fracture dislocation that had failed to heal satisfactorily despite previous surgery in the UK.

Stokes first injured the digit in Durham’s LV= County Championship fixture against Lancashire at the end of May.

He returned two months later and went on to make his one-day international debut in Dublin before featuring in the first four matches of the NatWest Series against India.

However, he was unable to resume bowling and a recurrence of the injury forced him to miss the final match in Cardiff and the subsequent reverse series last month.

Following his latest operation, Stokes is not expected to return until the beginning of the 2012 domestic season. His rehabilitation will be undertaken in the UK with specialist hand therapists in conjunction with Durham and the guidance of the ECB medical team.

Stokes said: “It’s always frustrating to be on the sidelines for any length of time and I am naturally disappointed to miss out on the opportunity to be considered for selection for England this winter.

“My priority now will be to work hard on my rehabilitation over the next six months and make sure I am fully fit and available to start the season with Durham next April.”