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Simmons to undergo finger surgery today

By Roger Seepersad

Trinidad and Tobago opener Lendl Simmons will be out of action for the next four to six weeks after fracturing his finger on the second day of T&T's four-day match against Barbados at Kensington Oval yesterday.

Team manager Omar Khan confirmed that Simmons fractured his left ring finger and will undergo surgery at hospital in Barbados this morning.

"Lendl is out of the game. At the end of the day, that is how the game goes sometimes...injuries are part of the game. He fractured his finger and could be out for four to six weeks." Khan told the Express yesterday.

The injury will see Simmons miss Trinidad and Tobago's next regional four-day match against the Windward Islands next weekend at Queen's Park Oval, Port of Spain and the opener could also be doubtful for the game against defending champions Jamaica next month (March 9-12) at the same venue.

"It will affect our batting because he is one of our key batsmen but we still have to play the game. We will keep fighting and we expect that Justin Guillen and Adrian Barath will come to the party in the second innings. They have been playing for a while now. Barath is an international player so he will have to step up now," Khan added.

The T&T manager confirmed that skipper and wicket-keeper Denesh Ramdin was also injured but is still able to take the field and lead the squad.

"Ramdin is fielding, he is not wicket-keeping. He got three stitches on his finger and was on the field today (yesterday). He continued his innings and if he needs to bat in the second innings, he will bat," said Khan.

Barbados' four-pronged pace attack proved to be a handful for the T&T batsmen, who were on their toes for most of the opening day and were eventually dismissed for 338 an hour into the second day yesterday.

Ramdin was struck on his left index finger on the first day and the finger was heavily bandaged yesterday. He was on 80 overnight and only added eight to his score.

Simmons assumed duties behind the stumps and it was not long before he had to be replaced by Darren Bravo. Simmons was struck by a Shannon Gabriel delivery behind the stumps.

This is the second injury for Simmons in the four-day tournament. His first came in T&T's opening round win over Combined Campuses and Colleges at 3Ws Oval in Barbados where he was struck on the knee.

That injury forced him to stay in the Caribbean for treatment and caused him to miss the ongoing Bangladesh Premier League Twenty20.

Simmons was bought by BPL franchise Chittagong Kings for US$25,000.

Sunil Narine and Rayad Emrit also got some blows when they batted, but luckily for T&T, they did not sustain any serious injuries.

Barbados also suffered some injuries from the aggressive fast bowling that was on display yesterday.

Gabriel, who hit his own wicket while trying to evade a Fidel Edwards bouncer earlier in the day, hit Ryan Hinds on the hand after the tea interval, forcing the all-rounder to retire hurt.

Hinds had to leave the ground to go to hospital for scans on his injured right hand but returned later in the day to resume his innings. He was eventually out for 46.

On Thursday, Barbados wicket-keeper Shane Dowrich failed to collect a short ball from Tino Best and was struck over his left eye and forced to leave the field. Jonathan Carter took up duties behind the stumps.

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