Reece Topley pulls out of the Hundred to ensure he is fit for T20 World Cup

Reece Topley pulls out of the Hundred to ensure he is fit for T20 World Cup

Reece Topley has pulled out of the final two weeks of the Hundred in order to ensure he is fit to play in the T20 World Cup.

Topley was England’s standout bowler in white-ball cricket this summer, taking 17 wickets across 10 limited-overs appearances against India and South Africa, and said in a statement that he had been “feeling the effects of a busy summer more and more over the last few weeks”.

“Taking a short break feels like a sensible precaution to avoid injury and the risk of a longer lay-off,” he said in a statement released by his Hundred team, Oval Invincibles. “Nonetheless, I’m disappointed not to be contributing as the team enters a crucial period in the competition.”

Tom Moody, Invincibles’ head coach, said he was “obviously disappointed to be losing a player of Reece’s calibre” but that the team “respect[s] his decision”. Invincibles are expected to sign a replacement player in the coming days.

Topley took five wickets – three of them in a crucial opening burst against Southern Brave – in his four appearances in the Hundred this season but his departure is a major blow to Invincibles’ chances of play-off qualification.

He previously missed their win against Welsh Fire in order to manage his body, and told ESPNcricinfo that he was “having to box smart” ahead of the World Cup. “Obviously there’s a lot of chat about the schedule and to be honest, for me to play as much as I have this summer and try to get to October fully fit probably isn’t sustainable,” he said.

“I’m having to box smart with where I play and not necessarily go for broke at this point in the season. My priority is to be available for selection for the World Cup and I’m doing everything in my power to be available. If that means missing games here and there, so be it.”

Invincibles will also lose two overseas players after Tuesday night’s game against Birmingham Phoenix: Sunil Narine will return to the Caribbean to play in the CPL, while Mohammad Hasnain has been called up to Pakistan’s Asia Cup squad. Peter Hatzoglou, the Australian spinner, will replace Narine, with Hasnain’s replacement unconfirmed.

Meanwhile, Jos Buttler has revealed he is not certain to play all seven of England’s T20 internationals in Pakistan next month after being ruled out of the rest of the Hundred with a calf strain. “Whether I’ll be available for all those games, I’m not quite sure yet,” he said while working for Sky Sports as a pundit.

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