Ben Stokes has undergone a second finger operation, leaving the England all-rounder as a major doubt ahead of the upcoming Ashes series.
Stokes took the decision to sit out the recent Test series with India to rest the injury and to prioritise his mental health.
Having opted to remain out of contention for the T20 World Cup, the 30-year-old was expected to consider participating on the tour of Australia which is scheduled to begin in December.
However, the England and Wales Cricket Board announced on Thursday that Stokes had undergone a second operation on his finger to remove two screws and scar issue.
While the ECB says that Stokes will now have four weeks of 'intense rehabilitation', a potential return date has not been suggested.
An announcement regarding England's tour of Australia is expected in due course with positive talks over quarantine measures said to have taken place earlier this week.