Reece Topley has been ruled out of England’s first T20 World Cup match against Afghanistan in Perth on Saturday – and possibly beyond – after rolling his ankle on the boundary markings before the team’s warm-up match against Pakistan in Brisbane on Monday. Topley’s height can be a huge factor in the game as the Australian pitch support bounce and it would be tricky for batsmen to judge the length.
With his dual roles in the Powerplay and at the death, Topley, 28, has claimed 17 wickets at 28.00 in 16 T20Is in 2022, more than any other England bowler.
He has accomplished this after overcoming a gruelling series of injury setbacks, including four back stress fractures in the five years since his brief appearance in England’s 2016 T20 World Cup campaign.
He did not bowl in the following match, as England rotated eight options in their 19-over fielding stint, and will be evaluated throughout the week ahead of the Afghanistan match on Saturday, according to an ECB spokesperson.
Topley stepped on a triangular boundary marker while attempting to catch during a fielding drill in the build-up to England’s otherwise comprehensive six-wicket win over Pakistan at the Gabba.
If his injury is more serious than expected, England has options in reserve, including Tymal Mills, who was replaced by Topley after suffering a groyne strain during last year’s T20 World Cup in the UAE.
Richard Gleeson of Lancashire is also among the team’s travelling reserves, while David Willey and Sam Curran are two other left-arm seamers on the original 15-man squad.
In better news for England, Liam Livingstone produced free-flowing innings of 28 from 16 at the Gabba after returning from his own ankle injury sustained during the Hundred in August.
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