New Delhi: The New Zealand squad has been dealt a blow with pacer Tim Southee ruled out of the upcoming Test series against India with an ankle injury.
Southee felt pain in his left foot during a training session and subsequent medical tests have revealed a grade two ligament strain in his left ankle. He has been ruled out of the three-match Test series against India which start in Kanpur on Septemner 22.
The 27-year-old was the most experienced bowler in the New Zealand Test squad with 177 wickets in 52 Tests and his absence is expected to hurt their chances during the upcoming Test series.
Tight-arm pacer Matt Henry has been called up as a replacement for Southee. The 24-year-old has played four Tests since debuting against England at Lord's in May 2015.
His last Test was against Australia at Christchurch in February.
Southee will now return to New Zealand for rest and rehabilitation in an attempt to regain fitness ahead of the five-match One-Day International (ODI) series which begin in Dharamsala on October 16.
"Tim has been working hard in preparation for this tour, so he's understandably very disappointed to be ruled out of all three Tests," New Zealand coach Mike Hesson was quoted as saying by espncricinfo.
"The focus now is for Tim to give his ankle 7-10 days rest, before slowly building his bowling loads back up ahead of the ODI series," he added.