Kanpur, Nov.20 : Question marks have surfaced about England fast bowler Ryan Sidebottom's durability and future in the game after he was ruled out of the third one-day international against India being played here today.
Sidebottom, England's player of the year for 2007-08, has bowled only two overs in an England shirt since early August because of a succession of injuries that included problems with his groin, hip, back, side and ankle, reports the Daily Express.
He also missed two of the four Tests against South Africa last summer and all of the one-day internationals that followed.
This winter, after almost four weeks away, he has bowled just 12 deliveries in anger in a warm-up match in Antigua against Middlesex, suffering first from an Achilles strain and now a sore lower back picked up in India.
While England's public stance on Sidebottom, 30, is that he has been unlucky with minor niggles, privately they must wonder how much he will be involved in the remainder of the one-day and Test series in India and the long tour of the West Indies that starts in late January.
It seems Sidebottom may be paying the price of asking too much from his body by pushing for extra pace, something former England coach Duncan Fletcher always said he lacked.
Injuries are an occupational hazard for professional sportsmen but some become more prone to them than others - and few put greater demands on their body than a fast bowler.
His Nottinghamshire colleague Graeme Swann, back in the squad for today's match having missed the first two defeats in the ODI series, said: "He is having an unlucky run. He is obviously down about it and desperate to get in the team and perform."