Lara out for six weeks

COLOMBO, Dec 18 (Reuters) - West Indies batsman Brian Lara will be out of action for at least six weeks because of a hairline fracture in his left elbow, team manager Ricky Skerritt said on Tuesday.

"Last night, we had Brian Lara looked at by another orthopaedic surgeon here in Colombo at a private clinic, since Lara’s fingers had been tingling and seemed somewhat swollen," Skerritt told Reuters by telephone.

"This was a second opinion that we had planned to have all along anyway. After more X-rays, and subsequent examination, it has now been diagnosed that there is definitely a hairline fracture at the elbow joint, which had been dislocated out of position when the collision occurred."

Skerritt was referring to Lara’s collision with fielder Marvan Atapattu in the West Indies’s eight-wicket defeat by Sri Lanka in the triangular one-day competition in Kandy on Saturday.

Lara, who was initially diagnosed as having a dislocated left elbow, set off for a quick single and Atapattu, fielding at cover, ran in to throw the wicket down. The players collided and the West Indian was left clutching his left arm in agony.

"After resetting the cast around the repaired joint, it is now suggested that Lara would be out of cricket for much longer than was at first thought, for no less than six weeks, perhaps longer, depending on healing," said Skerritt.

"Brian will be having yet another MRI examination later today to confirm all this, plus to see what progress in the healing process has been effected.

"What this means is that Brian Lara is effectively ruled out of the next scheduled West Indies tour, of Pakistan, if and when that takes place," said Skerritt.

The tour of Pakistan is due to start next month.

West Indies play Sri Lanka in the final of the triangular one-day competition on Wednesday. 0609 181201 GMT REU6535 3 SPO 528