New Delhi: Australia senior fast bowler Peter Siddle faces a "significant" stint on the sidelines after being diagnosed with a stress fracture in his back after Test series against New Zealand.
This comes as a big blow for the bowler who has been in good form of late for the World No. 1 Test side. The 31-year-old had featured for the visitors in the first Test and bowled impressively, but was ruled out of the next match.
Siddle, who has played 61 tests for Australia has taken 208 wickets. He returned to Melbourne on Monday for scans.
"Unfortunately those scans have indicated a stress fracture in his lower back," Cricket Australia physio David Beakley said in a statement.
David went on to add that the injury will require a lot of time for Siddle to recover as it will require lengthy rehab process. Siddle will also undergo an ankle surgery.
"He will now require a significant amount of time away from the game with a lengthy rehabilitation process. Whilst he is laid off with his current back injury, we will take the opportunity for Peter to have exploratory surgery on his left ankle to investigate and treat the cause of his ongoing ankle pain,” added David.
Australia have plenty of pacers in their kitty and a return for Siddle will be a difficult one. The likes of Josh Hazlewood and Mitchell Starc are the nation's premier two pacers. James Pattinson who was Siddle's replacement in the second Test, picked six wickets. Also to impress was Jackson Bird who took a five-for.
Siddle knows after the recovery he will have to step up and fight for a spot in the side and given Australia's depth in this department, it could be a tough journey for the pacer.
(With Agency inputs)