Ben Stokes and Jos Buttler set to miss fifth Test with Jonny Bairstow also an injury doubt

Ben Stokes and Jos Buttler set to miss fifth Test with Jonny Bairstow also an injury doubt

Ben Stokes could find himself on an early flight home due to the side injury that looks set to rule him out of the fifth Test in Hobart.

Stokes batted through the pain barrier to score 66, but was in obvious agony throughout and England will not want to risk any further damage to his side with more exertion.

He refused to have the area scanned before he began his innings on day three, insisting on doing what he could to help the team, but once medics get to assess the area he will almost certainly be required to rest with a decision to be made on his involvement in the West Indies tour in March.

Jonny Bairstow, Jos Buttler and Ben Stokes could all miss the final Ashes Test after picking up injuries in Sydney
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WILLIAM WEST/AFP via Getty Images)

Stokes could also be joined on the plane by Jos Buttler, who is nursing a hand injury he picked up while keeping on day two and if that proves to be serious, then an early departure for the multi-format players would make sense.

Jonny Bairstow also picked up an injury after taking a blow to his right thumb while batting and he has been for a scan.

The 32-year-old did resume his innings on day four and England will evaluate the extent of his injury at the end of the Test.

The injuries to both Bairstow and Buttler mean substitute fielder Ollie Pope was drafted in to keep wicket in Australia ‘s second innings and Sam Billings has been diverted away from the England T20 team to join the Ashes squad as cover.

Sam Billings has been drafted into the squad as cover for Bairstow and Buttler, having been starring for Sydney Thunder in the Big Bash
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Chris Hyde/Getty Images)

Billings, who has been playing Down Under for the Sydney Thunder to great success, has a real chance of making his Test debut next week after years on the fringes of selection.

When asked about the possibility of keeping in Hobart Bairstow admitted: “I don’t know as yet to be really honest with you.

“I’ll know some more information later but I’m not sure about the keeping side of things.”

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