Another stress fracture puts his career in doubt July 31, 2004

Bond decides to go under the knife

Wisden Cricinfo staff

Shane Bond: hoping to be back in December © Getty Images

Shane Bond, the New Zealand fast bowler, will undergo back surgery in a last ditch attempt to save his injury-ridden career.

Bond, 29, has only played in 10 Tests and 27 one-dayers for New Zealand, and a scan last week revealed another stress fracture in his back. After a few days to consider his options, Bond decided surgery was the best way to go, saying he had no other choice.

"I've exhausted all the other avenues," Bond told New Zealand's Radio Sport. "I had a period of rest and allowed it time to heal, but that didn't work." He continued, "And I altered my technique to a point where I thought it was pretty good, but that still hasn't worked either."

The operation is set for August 19, and it would involve fixing bolts and titanium wire onto his vertebrae. "It's a bit scary when you start hearing about bolts and wire going into your back, but I suppose it's part of being a sportsman," Bond said. "If I have this operation and it doesn't work then at least I know I'd given it everything."

After the operation, Bond will have to rest for at least six weeks, but he is pencilling in a return around December. "Conservatively, I'm looking at four months out. I'm looking at playing again over Christmas. I'd definitely like to think I'll be back at some stage over the summer."

In any case, he has already been ruled out of the ICC Champions Trophy in England this September, and is certain to miss the tours of Bangladesh and Australia later this year.