England suffered a massive blow ahead of the third Test against South Africa as pace spearhead James Anderson was ruled out of rest of the series due to an injury. After playing a starring role in England’s series-levelling victory in Cape Town, Anderson will miss the final two Tests in Port Elizabeth and Johannesburg respectively. The pacer suffered a rib injury during the final day of second Test and MRI scans confirmed he won’t be back in action until after the current tour.
The 37-year-old took to Twitter to express his disappointment and his post read: “Frustrating to be missing the rest of this series with a broken rib but hopefully will be healed in a few weeks! Will be supporting the boys from home.”
Anderson, England’s record Test wicket taker, spent almost five months working back to full fitness and showed signs of being back to his best with seven wickets in England’s 189-run win. But he was in visible discomfort on the final day, clutching his side at times and grimacing through two painful overs after tea.
“James Anderson has been ruled out of the remainder of the Test series against South Africa after sustaining a left rib injury in England’s second Test victory at Newlands,” an ECB statement said.
“Anderson felt tightness and discomfort at the end of the morning session on day five and was only able to bowl eight overs during the day. He will return to the UK in the next few days.”
Anderson’s tally of 584 Test scalps makes him the most prolific seamer in Test history, while his appearance in the Boxing Day Test at Centurion saw him become just the ninth man to win 150 Test caps.