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England opener Roy ruled out of T20 World Cup, Vince named replacement

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ABU DHABI: England opener Jason Roy has been ruled out of the remainder of the Twenty20 World Cup due to a torn calf muscle, the England & Wales Cricket Board (ECB) said in a statement on Monday.

James Vince, a travelling reserve, will replace Roy in the squad ahead of England’s last-four match against New Zealand in Abu Dhabi on Wednesday.

Roy retired hurt with the problem during England’s 10-run loss to South Africa in their final Super 12 match in Sharjah on Saturday even though Eoin Morgan’s team still qualified for the last four as the Group I leaders.

“I’m gutted to be ruled out of the World Cup. It is a bitter pill to swallow,” Roy said. “I will be staying on to support the boys, and hopefully, we can go all the way and lift that trophy.

“It has been an unbelievable journey so far, and we have to continue expressing ourselves and concentrating on us.

“The rehab has already started, and even though I’ve torn my calf I’m going to give myself the best chance of being ready for the T20 tour of the Caribbean at the start of next year.”

Roy has joined left-arm fast bowler Tymal Mills on the injured list in another blow to England, who lost to the West Indies in the final of the 2016 tournament.

“We’re all gutted for you @JasonRoy20,” said a tweet on the England Cricket account. “We will carry on playing in the positive spirit that you embody. If anyone can come back stronger, it’s you.”

Roy had made 123 runs in five innings at an average of 30.75 and a strike-rate of 138.2 in a tournament at which his opening partnership with Jos Buttler has often provided England with an ideal launchpad.

There are a number of options for a replacement opening partner alongside Buttler including Jonny Bairstow, Liam Livingstone, Dawid Malan and Moeen Ali.

England arrived in the Gulf without the injured Ben Stokes, Jofra Archer and Sam Curran before Mills broke down with a thigh strain.

Morgan’s side are bidding to become the first men’s team to hold cricket’s two major global limited-overs titles simultaneously.

Published in Dawn, November 9th, 2021

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