Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

Stokes Hoping for a Speedy Recovery

Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

Stokes Hoping for a Speedy Recovery

Article excerpt

Byline: Stuart Rayner

BEN Stokes is hoping to be fit for the start of the 2012 county cricket season, but the Durham all-rounder will not be involved in England's winter schedule.

The Riversiders have confirmed Stokes (pictured right) will be ruled out for six months after another operation on his right index finger.

Having made his debut in August, the Cumbrian-raised 20-year-old sat out England's one-day tour of India to undergo rehabilitation on the problem, but has now undergone surgery on the problem.

The original injury was sustained in May, during a County Championship game against Lancashire. He scored 185 in the game, his highest score of the campaign, and seemed almost certain to be named in the England one-day squad to take on Sri Lanka in June.

Instead, he had to wait until the 50-over trip to Ireland - a little over three weeks after his Durham return.

Stokes sustained the injury dropping a catch, suffering a badly dislocated finger and damaged ligaments. He has not been able to bowl since. Even when he was playing for his country, the complex fracture was still not sufficiently healed for him to be able to hold the ball.

Durham confirmed yesterday Stokes had been to the United States for surgery. He has been told to rest for approximately three months, then have three months of graded recovery and rehabilitation before he can play again.

That should allow him to start the season with Durham in April, although the schedule is tight.

"It's always frustrating to be on the sidelines for any length of time and I am naturally disappointed to miss out on the opportunity to be considered for selection for England this winter," said Stokes. "My priority now will be to work hard on my rehabilitation over the next six months and make sure I am fully fit and available to start the season with Durham next April. …

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