Tim Southee ruled out of South Africa Tests

Zeenews Sports Bureau

Johannesburg: New Zealand fast bowler Tim Southee was ruled out of the Test series against South Africa due to a thumb injury.

His injury which needs a surgery will put him on the sidelines for at least six to eight weeks.

"He landed heavily on his thumb while fielding, with scans indicating the ligament has fully ruptured and retracted," Cricinfo quoted New Zealand physio Paul Close as saying.

"After consultation with NZC medical staff and a hand specialist it was decided the best course of action is for him to have surgery,” he said.?

"He will commence rehabilitation immediately following the procedure, with a view to him returning to cricket during the home summer.?The procedure is likely to keep him out of the game for 6-8 weeks," added Close.

It is huge blow for New Zealand as Southee was in tremendous form in Sri Lanka where he took 12 wickets in two Tests. His 8-wicket haul in the second Test helped his side win the Test by 167 runs and drawing the series 1-1.

New Zealand play two Tests against South Africa which starts on January 2, 2013.

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