Boyd Rankin is still recovering from a stress fracture © Getty Images
Ireland's hopes of a third successive Intercontinental Cup win have suffered a blow with Boyd Rankin ruled out of next month's match against UAE. He will also miss the three one-day internationals against Bangladesh.
Rankin, who joined Warwickshire on a three-year deal from Derbyshire at the end of last season, suffered a stress fracture in his foot shortly before Christmas, and neither county or country want to risk him returning to action too soon. He is currently spending time with Allan Donald, Warwickshire's bowling coach, on remodelling his action.
"The injury has healed, and I have started back doing bowling drills with Allan Donald, adjusting a few things in my action just this week," Rankin said. "It was decided between everyone that it would be too soon to be back bowling at full fitness for the Intercontinental Cup match and the ODIs in Bangladesh. I'm concerned that if I come back too soon it might not fully recover and I could break down again."
Phil Simmons, Ireland's coach, said: "Hopefully with Allan working on remodelling Boyd's action, we'll get a fitter and more confident fast bowler."
However, Rankin's loss is partly offset by the unexpected availability of opening bowler Dave Langford-Smith, who has had a change of heart after initially ruling himself out of contention for the first half of the year due to work commitments.
"Dave's work is going better than he anticipated and thankfully he is able to get the necessary time off," Simmons said. Ireland take on the UAE in Abu Dhabi from March 6, and play three ODI's in Bangladesh on March 18, 20 and 22.