New Zealand all-rounder Mitchell Santner has been ruled out for nine months due to a knee injury.

Santner will miss Test series against England which is scheduled later this month and would not be playing this IPL.

He needs to undergo a surgery which will keep him out of action for six to nine months, the team confirmed on Wednesday.

The 26-year old felt discomfort during the limited overs matches against England and a scan revealed a bone defect. Further scans showed that the injury has worsened a Santner would need a surgery.

“Mitchell is well respected and we know that we can rely on him,” New Zealand coach Mike Hesson said in a statement.

“He is a key player of our team and we’ll miss him in the upcoming series,” he added.

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It comes as a cruel blow as he has played a pivotal role for the Black Caps in the recent ODI series against England, where he scored 216 runs at an average of 108, including an unbeaten 45 in the first match.

Santner recently grabbed the first sport in the MRF Tyres ICC T20I rankings as well.

Todd Astle, leg-spinner has been called up to replace Santner for the upcoming two-Test series against England.

The injury is also a blow to his IPL franchise, Chennai Super Kings as Santner would not be able to play in the upcoming edition of Indian Premier League which is scheduled to start from 7th April where Chennai would be taking on defending champions Mumbai Indians in Wankhede Stadium in the first match.

Chennai Super Kings had bought Mitchell Santner for INR 50 lakhs in this year’s IPL auction.