Joe Root injured, flies back home

London, March 7: England batsman Joe Root flew back to England after fracturing his thumb and is highly doubtful for the World T20 in Bangladesh from March 16-April 6.

Root broke his right thumb during his century in the third and last One-Day International (ODI) against West Indies in Antigua Wednesday.

Root, 23, will see a specialist in either London or Leeds over the next few days in the hope that some kind of quick fix can be mounted, reports the Telegraph.

Broken fingers will usually take four to six weeks to heal and England’s first game in the tournament is against New Zealand March 22.

“We won’t know more until he has seen the specialist,” said Rhian Evans, the media liaison officer for the England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) Thursday, soon after the team had landed in Barbados for three T20 games.

“It’s possible at this stage that we could still meet him at Heathrow en-route to Bangladesh but we won’t know whether that is an option until Monday or Tuesday,” Evans said.

The X-ray, taken in Antigua Thursday, confirmed the fracture many observers suspected after Ravi Rampaul struck his thumb with a lifter, the third ball Root faced. If it is a bad break, it may require a surgery.

After some on-field treatment and painkillers, Root stayed to face another 119 balls to reach his maiden one-day hundred.

The injury means that Ian Bell, flown out to Barbados as cover for Eoin Morgan and Alex Hales, will stay back as Root’s replacement and most probably go to Bangladesh, too.

IANS