Jofra Archer has started a period of “intensive rehabilitation” following elbow surgery but will not know more about a potential comeback date for at least a month.
The fast bowler has been managing varying degrees of pain in his right elbow for around 18 months and finally went under the knife at the end of last week after breaking down during his first-class return for Sussex.
He will now begin his recovery programme, overseen by England, before his condition is reviewed towards the end of June.
Having already been ruled out of both New Zealand Tests, he can now be certain of missing both white-ball series versus Sri Lanka and probably the limited-overs matches against Pakistan.
England would ideally like him to be back at full throttle in time to feature in the high-profile five-Test series against India, but the Twenty20 World Cup in October and the start of the Ashes trip Down Under remain the overwhelming priority.
A statement from the ECB read: “England and Sussex seam bowler Jofra Archer had surgery to address his long-standing elbow issues on Friday.
“Archer will now commence an intensive rehabilitation period working with the ECB and Sussex medical teams. His progress will be reviewed by his consultant in approximately four weeks’ time at which point further guidance will be provided as to when he can return to bowling. A further update will be given at the time.”
In Archer’s absence there are opportunities for other players to stake their claims, along with the established quartet of James Anderson, Stuart Broad, Chris Woakes and Mark Wood. His Sussex team-mate Ollie Robinson is likely to make his international debut against the Kiwis, while Craig Overton and Olly Stone are also pushing their case.