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Ben Stokes in doubt for third Test due to calf injury

Ben Stokes in doubt for third Test due to calf injury
Ben Stokes walking off the field after his injury in the second Test in Manchester.
©REUTERS / Action Images

England all-rounder Ben Stokes is currently a doubtful starter for the third Test against Pakistan at Edgbaston after suffering a calf injury on the fourth day of the second Test in Manchester.

In his sixth over of the fourth innings in the match, Stokes pulled up after bowling the second delivery and went off the field, taking no further part in the match.

After England wrapped up a 330-run win by dismissing Pakistan for 234 runs in the final innings, skipper Alastair Cook revealed that it will be a risk to rush Stokes back to action for the third game.

Stokes will undergo an MRI scan on Tuesday and Cook said that a treatment plan will be chalked out after the results are available.

“That is too early to say,” said Cook.

“But ‘Stokesy’ is a really tough nut and he said he felt something go.

“We will know a lot more in the morning.

“The good thing is he is walking around up in the changing-room now.

“I’d say he’d be a fairly big doubt for Edgbaston, that’s fairly obvious.

“But if the scan is a good one then we can start treating him.

“He is a tough guy but that (playing at Edgbaston) would be a big risk.”

In the last 12 months, Stokes has suffered a spate of injuries – one to his shoulder in 2015 and a knee injury recently against Sri Lanka, which needed a surgery.

Speaking about Stokes’ importance in the side, Cook said that the team will miss the 25-year-old if he cannot play at Edgbaston.

“He’s a true athlete – one of our great movers in our side,” said Cook.

“The shoulder one was unlucky, he might be having one of those spells in his career and hopefully he’ll come through the other side.

“His personality is a big thing.

“He plays on that edge, gives us a bit of an edge as a side, never takes a backward step and drags people with him.

“So if he’s not there at Edgbaston he’s a big miss.”

If the current injury to Stokes is a muscle tear, he is likely to be out of action for about six weeks, which will cause him to miss the remainder of the ongoing Test series against Pakistan.

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