England bowler Tim Bresnan faces a race to be fit for the start of the summer Test programme after undergoing an elbow operation in the United States.
The England and Wales Cricket Board today said Bresnan will need a six-to eight-week period of rehabilitation, meaning he could be back for the first Test against New Zealand which starts on 16 May.
The ECB statement said: "England and Yorkshire bowler Tim Bresnan has undergone an uncomplicated operation on his right elbow to remove extra bone and scar tissue."
It added that after rehabilitation, he would return to competitive cricket "early in the summer".
Meanwhile, England wicketkeeper Matt Prior says the ECB will have to softens its stance towards the Indian Premier League soon.
The ECB only allows England-contracted players to play half of the IPL season because of a clash with Tests in May. England is the only Test-playing nation staging matches during the sixth IPL, which runs from 3 April to 26 May. England's centrally-contracted players have to be back in England by 5 May, with the first Test against New Zealand at Lord's starting on 16 May. As a result, they are less attractive to IPL franchises. Prior has been unsold in the last two player auctions.
Prior said: "The IPL and these Twenty20 competitions are not going away. People love them and the players enjoy playing in them, so there are going to be more and more people getting frustrated at the lack of opportunity to play in the IPL. So things may have to change in time."