Ajmal Shahzad was today ruled out of the rest of England's World Cup campaign because of a recurrence of a hamstring injury.
Shahzad had a scan on his left leg last night, on the eve of England's must-win Group B match against West Indies, and the results mean he will return home immediately.
England will consider calling up a replacement only if they beat the Windies today and therefore put themselves back in position to qualify for the quarter-finals.
Shahzad's misfortune did not result in a reprieve for out-of-form pace spearhead James Anderson, who has been dropped.
England therefore made three changes from the team which lost to Bangladesh last week.
Chris Tremlett came in for Anderson; Luke Wright replaced Paul Collingwood, and James Tredwell was in as a second off-spinner instead of Shahzad.
All three were playing their first match of the tournament, in this crucial fixture.
England's chances of progressing to the knockout stages increased significantly when they won an important toss and chose to bat first.
Wicketkeeper Matt Prior retained his opening position alongside captain Andrew Strauss, rather than being dropped down the order in favour of Ravi Bopara or Ian Bell.
For West Indies, destructive opener Chris Gayle was fit as expected after his abdominal injury.
Shivnarine Chanderpaul was surprisingly dropped to accommodate Gayle, and young leg-spinner Devendra Bishoo was selected on debut in place of slow left-armer Nikita Miller.
Meanwhile, Bruce Oxenford joined his fellow Australian Steve Davis as an on-field umpire, replacing Asoka de Silva who has been reallocated to less high-profile matches following a poor ratio of initial decisions overturned on DRS.