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— Reuters/File
— Reuters/File

New Zealand face a huge blow ahead of their T20 World Cup game against Pakistan as their fast bowler, Lockie Ferguson, was ruled out of the ICC T20 World Cup due to a calf tear. New Zealand are set to face Pakistan today.

According to a statement by NZC, Ferguson felt tightness in his right calf following training last night and a subsequent MRI scan on game-day revealed a grade two tear which would require three to four weeks of recovery.

“With the New Zealand set to play five pool games over the next 13 days, coach Gary Stead said they had no option but to rule Ferguson out of the tournament,” New Zealand Cricket said in a statement.

“It’s a real shame for Lockie to have this happen on the eve of the tournament and the entire team is really feeling for him right now,” Stead said.

“He’s a massive part of our T20 side and has been in such good form — so to lose him at this time is a blow. However, we are fortunate to have a like for like replacement in the form of Adam Milne who has been with the squad training for the past two weeks,” Stead added.

Stead indicated Ferguson would be replaced in the 15-player tournament squad by Adam Milne subject to approval by the ICC Technical Committee.

“Milne is already in the UAE with the team having been selected in the squad as travelling injury cover, but won’t be available to play until ICC approval has been received making him unavailable for today’s match against Pakistan in Sharjah,” read the NZC statement, issued minutes before the toss.

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