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Jonny Bairstow has been ruled out of the remaining limited-overs games on England’s tour of Sri Lanka and could be in doubt for the Test series.

Bairstow missed Saturday’s ODI after injuring his right ankle ligaments playing football during the warm-up to training on Friday. Alex Hales, who is vying with Bairstow for one of the opener’s spots, took his place in the England side that won the fourth ODI.

The England management have now announced that Bairstow will not be available for the final ODI – in Colombo on Tuesday – or the one-off T20 that follows it on Saturday.

“He will be monitored and assessed on a daily basis by the England medical team in Sri Lanka and a further update will be given in due course on his fitness ahead of the three-match Test series starting next month,” the ECB said in a statement.

While there are several wicketkeeping options within England’s Test squad – not least Jos Buttler, who kept in the Ageas Bowl Test against India after Bairstow sustained a finger injury, Rory Burns and Ollie Pope, who kept for England Lions during the English domestic season – any concerns over Bairstow’s ability to keep could result in a call-up for Surrey’s Ben Foakes, who is regarded by many as the best keeper in England.

The manner of Bairstow’s injury is sure to renew debate over the wisdom of playing football as a warm-up activity. While it is hugely popular among the players, there have been some notable injuries caused by it over the years; albeit not many of them in recent times. Ashley Giles, who is among the favourites to succeed Andrew Strauss as England’s managing director, has gone on the record in the past expressing his reservations about cricketers playing football in training.

The first Test starts in Galle on November 6, with England playing two two-day warm-up games beforehand.

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