Lockie Ferguson has been ruled out of the T20 World Cup 2021 due to a calf rupture and New Zealand Cricket reports this less than an hour before the team’s first match against Pakistan in Sharjah on Tuesday. In a like-for-like right-arm quick paceman exchange, Ferguson will be replaced by Adam Milne, who was previously in the reserves. “Ferguson noticed discomfort in his right calf after training, and an MRI scan on game day indicated a grade two tear that would take three to four weeks to heal,” according to the NZC statement.

Martin Guptill, New Zealand’s opening batter, suffered a toe injury during their game against Pakistan and could miss their next match against India on Sunday*. Shortly before being dismissed for 17, Guptill was injured on the toe with delivery from Haris Rauf. After the game, New Zealand coach Gary Stead told reporters, “He looked a little bit uncomfortable at the conclusion of the game, and it might take 24 to 48 hours to see how he goes.”

New Zealand’s T20 World Cup group stage schedule calls for them to play five games in 13 days, and Stead claimed they had no choice but to rule Ferguson out of the competition. “Having this happen on the eve of the tournament is a great shame for Lockie, and the entire squad is really hurting for him right now,” Stead said. “He’s a big part of our T20 side and has been in great form, so losing him now is a big loss.”

Milne is already in the UAE with the team as a travelling injury cover, but he won’t be able to play until the ICC approves him. Milne will now be available for selection for New Zealand’s remaining games in the tournament after the ICC’s technical committee accepted the replacement immediately after New Zealand’s game against Pakistan.