New Zealand’s Williamson likely to be out of action for two months, says coach Stead

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New Zealand captain Kane Williamson has been ruled out for the next two months and is likely to miss much of the home International summer due to a recurring elbow injury.

New Zealand coach Gary Stead said on Tuesday that Williamson’s left elbow is giving him more trouble and the skipper is likely looking at eight or nine weeks out of action, However, Stead said that it is unlikely that Williamson might go for surgery.

According to the report published in stuff.co.nz, Stead said, “His left elbow tendon flared up again through the last Test. He was obviously in considerable discomfort throughout the Test and since then, subsequently, it hasn’t got better at all.”

New Zealand will play a two Tests series against Bangladesh starting from January 1 and then travel to Australia for three ODIs and a T20 from January 30-February 8. Williamson will probably miss out on the first Test against South Africa, starting from February 17, 2022.

“I think surgery is unlikely. If we don’t have to cut a tendon, our choice is not to do that. Kane’s doing it tough, don’t get me wrong. He loves playing for New Zealand, he hates the thought of missing any cricket, let alone Test cricket for New Zealand,” he added.

Williamson — who has been battling a persistent elbow injury over the past year which bothered him during the Twenty20 World Cup last month — was left out of the NZ XI for the second Test in Mumbai. He played the first Test of the two-test series in Kanpur.

“It’s been a challenging year for Kane trying to manage his elbow and it’s important we now formulate a good plan with him to ensure the injury does not continue to plague him,” Stead said. “He will likely require a sustained period of rest followed by rehabilitation, strengthening, and gradual batting loading.”

“It’s been a really tough time for Kane having to deal with such a persistent injury. While we’ve been able to manage the injury through the year and the T20 World Cup, the shift to Test cricket and the increased batting load has re-aggravated his elbow. Ultimately the injury is still not right and while he got through the Kanpur Test, it was clear playing in the second Test wasn’t an option,” Stead said.

“We all know how much he loves playing and leading this team, particularly in Tes’ cricket, so it’s a very difficult decision to sit out,” the coach added.

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