DP World ILT20: Luke Wood to replace injured Tymal Mills in Desert Vipers squad

Mills has been ruled out of the tournament after sustaining a toe injury during the Desert Vipers' opening match against the Sharjah Warriors

By Team KT

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England's Luke Wood. — AFP file
England's Luke Wood. — AFP file

Published: Sat 21 Jan 2023, 5:20 PM

England left-arm fast bowler Luke Wood has been drafted into the Desert Vipers squad for the DP World ILT20.

Wood, 27, comes in as a replacement for fellow England fast bowler Tymal Mills, who has been ruled out of the tournament after sustaining a toe injury during the Desert Vipers victory in its opening match against the Sharjah Warriors on January 15.

Wood is currently in action for the Melbourne Stars and is expected to arrive in Dubai on January 26, in time for the team’s match against the Dubai Capitals on Saturday, January 28, at the Dubai International Stadium.

Wood was drafted into the England squad last year and played two T20 Internationals against Pakistan in Pakistan ahead of the Men’s T20 World Cup. He also made his One-Day International debut in Australia in November 2022.

On the domestic front, Wood had a successful run in The Hundred last year with the champion team the Trent Rockets and was the third highest wicket-taker for the team that also included Desert Vipers captain Colin Munro and opening batter Alex Hales.

Currently playing for the Melbourne Stars in the Big Bash League in Australia, Wood has taken 17 wickets in 12 games played so far, and he currently is his side’s leading wicket-taker in the competition.

Explaining the departure of Tymal Mills from the squad, Desert Vipers Director of Cricket Tom Moody said: “Unfortunately for Tymal he has had a recurrence of a troubled toe, that he has had issues with over the last twelve months.

“It is not a major injury for him, but it is enough for him and for us to take serious consideration about his own welfare and recovery of that toe.

“From a team perspective (for us) it is important to have a fully fit squad. We know we have a lot of back-to-back cricket coming up and there is going to be a lot of pressure, particularly on our bowling unit.

“We need to make sure that we have fit and available players. So, unfortunately, Tymal is not going to be available for the rest of the tournament. It is a huge loss because he is a high-quality bowler and a great character to have around the group. He has already had a huge impact on the bowling unit and the team. It is sad to see his situation, but we certainly hope he has a speedy recovery, and that toe issue is something of the past when it is seen by the specialist.”

Moody added the team was glad to welcome left-arm pace bowler Luke Wood as Mills’ replacement. “Luke Wood is coming off some good form in the Big Bash League so that is a great win for us.

“Luke has got great around skills and has had a terrific twelve months in shortform cricket in The Hundred and representing England, and he has done well in the Big Bash League.

“He swings the ball early on and we have seen the conditions here in the UAE where the ball is swinging around, and he will relish the opportunity to get the new ball into his hands.

“Importantly for us we are bringing in a form player who is hungry to take on these new opportunities.“

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