Ben Stokes injury: England face anxious wait as star all-rounder suffers side issue after short-ball barrage

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·2-min read
Ben Stokes injury: England face anxious wait as star all-rounder suffers side issue after short-ball barrage
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Ben Stokes appears almost certain not to bowl again in the Fourth Ashes Test and could be a doubt for the final game of the series having suffered a concerning injury to his left side.

Stokes pulled up after five balls of his fourth over of day two in Sydney, all of which had seen him produce short deliveries designed to unsettle Steve Smith and Usman Khawaja. Mark Wood bowled the over’s final ball.

The constant diet of bouncers took its toll on Stokes, who left the field to be assessed. He returned a few minutes after lunch and spent the afternoon fielding in the slips (he has not been stationed there in recent times due to concerns over the serious finger injury he suffered earlier in the year). He did not bowl again in the innings.

There were no plans to send Stokes for a scan this evening, but his condition will be assessed in the morning. He plans to bat in his usual No5 positions, with his team-mate Stuart Broad saying he would be bat “if it’s not torn to shreds”.

His participation – whether in full or at all – in the Fifth Test in Hobart next week appears in severe doubt.

“He’s one of the toughest blokes I’ve ever met, the toughest cricketer I’ve ever met,” said Broad.

“For him to go off and not bowl… it’s obviously sore. But he’s icing it at the moment. We’ve no information on what’s happened in his side.

“Hopefully we give him a lot of rest tomorrow. 12-24 hours in cricket is quite a long time. It gives the body a lot of time to heal. We’ll wait and see. He stayed on the field so he could bat in his usual position. He’s a tough character.

Ben Stokes did not bowl again on day two in Sydney after suffering an injury to his left side (Getty Images)
Ben Stokes did not bowl again on day two in Sydney after suffering an injury to his left side (Getty Images)

“He’ll be out there if it’s not torn to shreds. We as England fans and teammates hope it’s not as bad as him not bowling again on this trip.”

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