Injured O'Keefe ruled out of Sri Lanka Test series

Steve O'Keefe scored 23 runs and picked three wickets in the first Test before injury ended his participation in the remainder of the game.
Steve O'Keefe scored 23 runs and picked three wickets in the first Test before injury ended his participation in the remainder of the game.
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Australian left-arm orthodox spinner Steve O’Keefe has suffered a hamstring injury and has been ruled out of the remainder of the ongoing Test series against Sri Lanka.

In his 17th over of the second Sri Lankan innings on day three of the first Test, O’Keefe pulled up and went off the field while Adam Voges chipped in to complete his over.

O’Keefe took no further part in the day’s play and Australian team physiotherapist David Beakley revealed that the 31-year-old will undergo scans after returning to Australia following the end of the first Test.

“Steve injured his right hamstring while chasing a ball in the field during the second session yesterday,” team physio David Beakley said.

“Initial assessment indicates a moderate grade hamstring injury which means it is highly unlikely that he will be available for the remainder of the Test series.

“Steve will remain with the squad in Kandy until the end of the Test and will undertake imaging on the injury upon his return to Australia.”

In the place of O’Keefe, the Australian selectors have picked uncapped left-arm spinner Jon Holland, who has 106 first-class wickets from 38 matches.

Australian national selector Rod Marsh expressed his disappointment at O’Keefe’s injury and hinted that Holland is most likely to make his debut in the second Test match in Galle.

“It is incredibly disappointing for Steve to get this injury and I really feel for him,” national selector Rod Marsh said.

“He was bowling well in the Test and had caused some trouble to Sri Lanka’s top order.

“The selectors have decided to go for a like-for-like replacement for Steve, in Jon Holland.

“Jon had a good end to the Sheffield Shield season and is currently in Brisbane with Australia A as they prepare for a four-day match against South Africa A.

“He will be on a plane as soon as possible and is a strong chance to make his debut in the Galle Test.”

At the end of day three of the Pallekele Test match, Sri Lanka extended their lead to 196 runs with Kusal Mendis batting unbeaten on 169 runs.

© Cricket World 2016