Haseeb withdraws from MCC squad

Haseeb Hameed impressed on debut for England Associated Press

Haseeb Hameed will miss MCC's season curtain-raising fixture against the Champion County, Middlesex, next month, to undergo a sinus operation.

Hameed, who made a strong impression in three Test appearances for England against India last year, before leaving the tour early with a broken finger, is currently in Sri Lanka with the England Lions squad.

His intention is to play in the second four-day game against Sri Lanka A, which starts in Dambulla on Friday, then head home for surgery.

"It's something I've needed to do for a while, and this is a good time to do it," said Hameed. "It's disappointing to miss the chance to play for the MCC against Middlesex, because it was an honour to be selected. But by having the operation in early March, I will be fit for the start of the season with Lancashire."

Hameed has been replaced in the MCC squad by Alex Lees, the Yorkshire opener, who will be joined by his county team-mate Liam Plunkett following the withdrawal of their fellow Yorkshireman, Matt Fisher, who suffered a groin injury when captaining England Under-19s in India earlier this month.

John Stephenson, MCC's Head of Cricket, said: "Of course it is a shame that Haseeb and Matt have had to withdraw from the squad, but we have two excellent replacements in Liam and Alex who will add experience and firepower. Our team is full of exciting young English cricketers and I am really looking forward to seeing them in what should be a very competitive and engaging match."