Ian Bell’s hopes of featuring in the County Championship for Warwickshire have been dashed by a new injury which will rule him out for the 2019 season.
The batsman has been present in every campaign dating back to 2000, but a tendon issue in his left knee is yet another setback for the 37-year-old to deal with.
Bell had been dealing with a foot injury picked up on Pakistan Super League duty in February.
And this latest problem, coming as he neared a return to first-team action after featuring for the county’s second XI, has heaped more frustration on Warwickshire sport director Paul Farbrace.
“It’s extremely frustrating for us, and for Ian, that another injury has happened when he was extremely close to a first-team return,” Farbrace said.
“Over the last couple of weeks our medical team have been regularly assessing the condition of his left knee, and we have also been supported by sports injury specialists in London. However, the outcome of this has confirmed that Ian will need to have several injections, which rules him out of action for six to eight weeks and effectively ends his season.
“He will now have a three-week period of minimal activity before working closely with our medical and strength and conditioning teams to prepare him for the pre-season programme in 2020.”
Warwickshire are the closest team to Division One basement boys Notts, with the first of the four final rounds of the Championship set to commence on August 18 when Farbrace’s side welcome title-chasers Somerset.