Jonny Bairstow: England batter ruled out of third Test and T20 World Cup

England batter Jonny Bairstow has been ruled out of the third Test against South Africa and the Twenty20 World Cup after sustaining a possible broken left leg while playing golf on Friday.

The 32-year-old slipped walking to a tee box and will see a specialist to ascertain the extent of the injury.

Bairstow confirmed he will need surgery on his Instagram account.

Nottinghamshire’s Ben Duckett has been added to the squad for the series-deciding Test at the Kia Oval.

The Yorkshireman has been in brilliant form in 2022, scoring 1,061 runs and six centuries in 10 Tests, and remains a key part of England’s white-ball teams.

Earlier on Friday he was named in England’s squad for the T20 World Cup in Australia, which begins for England on 22 October, with managing director Rob Key confirming Bairstow was set to open the batting.

Instead, a replacement for the 15-man group must be found, with the England and Wales Cricket Board confirming that an announcement will be made in due course.

Ex-England spinner Alex Hartley, speaking on BBC Two, said: “It’s devastating news, he has been so good for England this summer. To sustain a freak injury playing golf is such a blow for England, but more importantly for Bairstow.”

With Bairstow missing, his Yorkshire team-mate Harry Brook could be in line to make his Test debut against South Africa. The 23-year-old has been part of the England squad throughout the summer and will now compete with left-hander Duckett for a place in the XI.

Duckett, 27, is also an option to replace Bairstow in the World Cup squad. He is one of three batters included in the touring party to take on Pakistan later in September not named in the tournament squad.

Surrey’s Will Jacks, 23, and Jordan Cox of Kent, 21, are the other two, while there is still the possibility that Jason Roy could be in line for a quick recall having been dropped from the original 15.

‘Bairstow so difficult to replace in every format’ – analysis

by BBC Sport’s chief cricket writer, Stephan Shemilt

It’s hard to overestimate just how big a blow this is to England.

This morning Rob Key was saying Bairstow would open in the batting in the T20 World Cup, while on a golf course in Leeds the batter was suffering a nightmare injury that will probably put him out for the rest of 2022.

Bairstow is the form Test batter in the world this year, so England have a hole to fill for the South Africa series decider and the tour of Pakistan in December. Harry Brook seems set for a long-awaited chance.

As for the T20 World Cup, England have options – promoting Dawid Malan or using Phil Salt as an opener.

They are all fine players, but it will difficult to replace everything Bairstow brings to England across all formats.

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