Zak Crawley ruled OUT of England’s first two Tests against India with a jarred wrist after slipping over outside the changing rooms in Chennai on his 23rd birthday
- Zak Crawley slipped in the dressing rooms in Chennai, hurting his right wrist
- It creates a selection headache for England – Crawley was set to bat at No 3
- Jonny Bairstow batted at No 3 in Sri Lanka but has been sent home by England
England have received a major blow on the eve of the first Test against India with Zak Crawley ruled out of the first two matches with a jarred wrist.
The Kent batsman sustained the injury after slipping outside the dressing rooms of the Chepauk Stadium in Chennai and later had a scan for a possible broken right wrist after missing training.
While the diagnosis isn’t as bad as first feared, it is enough to rule him out of the first two Tests.
Zak Crawley will miss England’s first two Tests against India after injuring his right wrist
Crawley injured his wrist slipping outside the dressing room in Chennai on his 23rd birthday
‘Scan results have confirmed that Crawley has jarred his right wrist, which has sprained the joint and led to local inflammation,’ England said in a statement on Thursday.
‘The England medical team will continue to assess his progress over the next few weeks.’
It creates a major selection headache for England on the eve of their first Test against Virat Kohli’s side.
Crawley was set to drop down to No 3 in the batting order with Rory Burns returning to open and England had sent home Jonny Bairstow, who batted at three in the two Tests against Sri Lanka.
The most likely solution now is for England to promote the returning Ben Stokes to three while recalling the fit-again Ollie Pope into the middle order and giving Dan Lawrence another chance to establish himself.
An alternative for England is to bat Jos Buttler at six, leave out Lawrence and play an extra all-rounder in Moeen Ali or Chris Woakes at seven.
Jonny Bairstow batted at No 3 in Sri Lanka but has been sent home ahead of the India Tests
An option now for England is for the returning Ben Stokes to move up to No 3 in the order
Moeen was already in contention to replace Dom Bess and make his first Test appearance for 18 months.
Crawley, who turned 23 on Wednesday, enjoyed an electrifying 2020 in the England Test side scoring 267 against Pakistan last year.
But he struggled to impose himself against Sri Lanka and only reached double figures once, with a score of 13, in four innings.