Reece Topley out of England's T20 World Cup bid, Tymal Mills on standby

Reece Topley has been ruled out of the T20 World Cup with an ankle injury, giving England a major selection headache just three days before the start of their campaign.

Topley rolled his left ankle after standing on a boundary advertisement cushion then landing awkwardly during some catching drills ahead of England's warm-up win over Pakistan in Brisbane on Monday.

While there has been no confirmation from the England and Wales Cricket Board, it is believed scans have shown significant damage and the 6ft 7in left-arm seamer's tournament is over.

Any change to the 15-strong squads must be ratified by the International Cricket Council but England have two pace bowlers in their three travelling reserves in Tymal Mills and Richard Gleeson.

Mills, another left-armer who bowls quicker than Topley but who has not played since August 10 because of a toe injury, seems probable to be drafted in by England as they begin their bid to unify cricket's two most coveted white-ball trophies when they face Afghanistan in Perth on Saturday.

If rubberstamped by the ICC, it would be an unfortunate role reversal, with Mills an injury withdrawal during last year's World Cup in the United Arab Emirates because of a thigh strain and replaced by Topley.

While Topley did not make any appearances then, he has gone on to become an increasingly dependable figure in 2022, having overcome multiple stress fractures in his back in recent years that threatened to derail his career.

Topley has taken 17 wickets in 16 T20s this year - the most by any England bowler - with an economy rate of 7.8 impressive given he operates mainly in the powerplay at the death.

The 28-year-old - who is currently ranked as the second-best seamer in T20 internationals, in a list dominated by spinners - was considered highly likely to be in England's XI this weekend.

England already have left-arm options in Sam Curran and David Willey while Chris Woakes, Mark Wood, Chris Jordan and all-rounder Ben Stokes are England's other seam bowlers.

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