Ian Bell will play no part in Warwickshire's County Championship campaign for the first time since 2000, after being ruled out for the remainder of the 2019 season due to a tendon issue in his left knee.
Bell, who had been on the comeback from a foot injury sustained during the Pakistan Super League in February, reported the knee concern following Warwickshire's Second XI Championship game with Lancashire.
"It's extremely frustrating for us, and for Ian, that another injury has happened when he was extremely close to a First Team return," said Paul Farbrace, Sport Director at Warwickshire CCC.
"Over the last couple of weeks our medical team have been regularly assessing the condition of his left knee, and we have also been supported by sports injury specialists in London. However, the outcome of this has confirmed that Ian will need to have several injections, which rules him out of action for six to eight weeks and effectively ends his season.
"He will now have a three-week period of minimal activity before working closely with our medical and strength and conditioning teams to prepare him for the pre-season programme in 2020."
The injury means that Bell, 37, will be absent from Warwickshire's first-class statistics for the 2019 season, the first time in nearly 20 years that he has failed to play at least one first-class game. He made his debut for the club as a 17-year-old in 1999.
"Whilst we are naturally disappointed to lose a player of Ian's immense talent, one of the positives of 2019 has been the way in which our young, homegrown players have fought in recent weeks," added Farbrace.
"They will continue to be given the opportunity to develop and thrive as we continue our Vitality Blast campaign and fight to retain our place in Division One of the Specsavers County Championship."